Four teenagers from New Mexico have been charged in connection with the death of a young girl during a drive-by shooting. The incident occurred on August 13 at the Vista Del Sol mobile home park in Albuquerque. Two of the suspects, aged 15 and 16, have been taken into custody on charges of murder and other offenses. Authorities are still searching for two brothers, aged 17 and 15, who are also facing charges.
According to the Albuquerque Police Department, the shooting took place while Galilea Samaniego, a 5-year-old girl, was sleeping in a mobile home with her siblings and other children. The intended target of the drive-by was one of the teenage grandsons of the home’s resident. A bullet pierced the mobile home, striking Galilea in the head. She was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Surveillance footage released by the police showed two stolen Kia Souls present during the shooting. The authorities are seeking information about these vehicles. The investigation revealed that the teenagers were involved in a long-standing dispute over a girl, which had escalated into drive-by shootings in recent months.
The police have linked bullet casings from the Vista Del Sol shooting to a previous incident involving several of the suspects in November 2022. It is unclear how the teenagers obtained firearms. Four minutes after the Vista Del Sol incident, the suspects allegedly took part in another drive-by shooting at a separate home. The family inside that residence was unharmed but reported experiencing a previous attack.
The four teenage suspects have been charged with murder, conspiracy, shooting at a dwelling or occupied building, shooting at or from a motor vehicle, and unlawful taking of a motor vehicle. The two teens in custody are being represented by the New Mexico Law Offices of the Public Defender.