A wounded Desert Hot Springs teen who was left behind a Yucaipa convenience store was shot by a Yucaipa homeowner during an alleged burglary attempt, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department announced Thursday.
The 16-year-old boy, whose name was withheld, was found at 6:13 p.m. Saturday behind a 7-Eleven store at Yucaipa Boulevard and 14th Street.
Three unidentified suspects — two males and one female who remain at large — helped the boy out of a Ford Mustang GT, placed him on the ground, then sped off, according to deputies at the Yucaipa sheriff’s station.
The teen was taken to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where he underwent surgery for a gunshot to the upper body. He remains hospitalized in stable condition.
According to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, the boy and the other suspects tried to force their way into a home in the 33000 block of Wallace Way through a backyard window and were confronted by the 69-year-old homeowner, whose name was withheld.
As the suspects attempted to flee, the homeowner fired a single gunshot at the group, striking the 16-year-old. The homeowner reported the break-in about 30 minutes after the shooting, but “failed to report that he fired his weapon at the suspects,” according to a sheriff’s statement, which says the suspects’ Mustang was later found in Indio, with “evidence related to the attempted burglary” found inside the car.
No arrests have been made at this point. At the conclusion of the investigation, “the case will be presented to the District Attorney’s Office for review and determination if any criminal charges will be filed against the burglary suspects or the homeowner,” according to a sheriff’s statement.
Anyone with information on the shooting or the outstanding suspects was asked to call Deputy Coillot with the Yucaipa sheriff’s station at (909) 918-2305, or 1-800-78-CRIME to report anonymously.