Teen’s death investigated

Mesa County Sheriff’s deputies search for evidence in the road outside of 621 Susan Street.

Investigators with the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department are working to determine how a teenage boy was fatally wounded Wednesday afternoon in front of a Clifton home.

Initial police radio reports around 3:30 p.m. said a male caller, who was uncooperative with dispatchers, reported another male had a gunshot wound in the chest and was dead near the front porch at 619 Susan Street.

A young man was led away from the scene in handcuffs, his hands covered in evidence-protective bags, witnesses said.

Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Heather Benjamin confirmed little else about the case, saying only they had an active death investigation.

A deputy at the scene was overheard telling witnesses the victim was a 16-year-old boy.

Richard Chambers, 46, who lives at 622 Susan St., said he was reading inside his home when he heard a panicked teenage boy repeatedly yelling, “Troy.”

Chambers said he walked outside, crossed the street and saw one boy standing over another who had been shot and lying on his back.

Chambers said the boy who had been yelling explained he and his friend were attempting to disassemble a .22-caliber bullet in order to “blow stuff up,” when the round went off and struck his friend.

“I can still see that kid’s face in my mind,” said Chambers, who believes he watched the boy’s last moments. “He coughed one last time, and that was it.”

Chambers said he didn’t see any firearms or other loose ammunition nearby. Approximately a half hour prior to the incident, Chambers heard a possible gunshot, he said. Chambers described the boys as friends of each other and part of a group of four or so who regularly hang out together in the neighborhood.

“Just a sad situation and something that should never happen,” he said.


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