Casper Police Investigating Early Tuesday Shooting Death of High-School Age Victim

The Casper police are investigating the shooting death of a high-school age student in a southwest neighborhood early Tuesday morning. Police say “involved parties” in custody and witnesses being interviewed.

DK
Dale Killingbeck

May 14, 20243 min read

Casper Police Department is investigating the fatal shooting of a high-school-age female in a southwest city neighborhood early Tuesday.
Casper Police Department is investigating the fatal shooting of a high-school-age female in a southwest city neighborhood early Tuesday. (Dale Killingbeck, Cowboy State Daily)

The Casper Police Department is investigating the shooting death of a high-school age female in a southwest section of the community early this morning.

“The involved parties are in custody and witnesses are being interviewed by detectives,” police spokesperson Amber Freestone said in a statement. 

In a text to Cowboy State Daily, Freestone said witnesses are still being interviewed and follow-up information will be released when available. She did not respond to questions about the age of the victim or the ages or sex of those currently in custody.

“At this time there is no threat to the community,” she said.

The incident occurred near Whispering Springs Road and Gila Bend in the far southwest portion of the city. The neighborhood is on the north side of the North Platte River.

Police cars could be seen outside of a two-story house on Gila Bend Road.

High School Student

Natrona County School District spokesperson Tanya Southerland said the victim was a high school student in the district.

“We are devastated to learn of a tragedy involving a Natrona County High School student off campus last night,” she said. “The Natrona County School District extends its deepest sympathies and condolences to the family, friends, and school community following the tragic passing of a student.”

Southerland advised parents to have their students speak with counselors, go to the office, talk with a school resource office or other staff for support if needed.

“There has been no safety concern identified to NCHS as a result of this isolated incident,” she said. “As a proactive measure, additional SRO (school resource officers) will be on campus today.”

Casper Police ask that anyone with information related to the Tuesday’s incident to contact their department at 307-235-8278. Those who wish to remain anonymous can use the Crime Stoppers line by calling 307-577-8477 or submitting information through crime-stoppers.com.

The incident follows the fatal stabbing of 14-year-old Robert “Bobby” Maher Jr. on April 7 at the city’s mall. Two juveniles are awaiting arraignment in Natrona County District Court on murder charges in that case.

Culture Of Violence

Since the stabbing death of Bobby Maher, the community has been under the spotlight for a culture of violence among youth.

At a Natrona County Schools Board of Education meeting Monday night, a parade of parents, community members, and students for a second month in a row spoke about the need to address the bullying and culture of violence that can lead to teen suicides and other issues. 

A Casper youth pastor and YMCA sports director in the city, DC Martinez had previously scheduled a meeting of the new Blue Heart Collaborative with area youth agencies and nonprofits Friday from 5 - 7 p.m. to address the culture of youth violence in the city. The group was formed following the Maher tragedy.

A statement on the Blue Heart Collaborative Facebook page Tuesday morning following the police announcement and school statement, again called for the city to come together to address teen deaths. 

“This is exactly why we need this community meeting to bring all the community youth resources together to prevent more of these tragedies,” the statement read. “Our heart goes out to another family who lost their child to senseless violence. This has to stop!!”

Dale Killingbeck can be reached at dale@cowboystatedaily.com.

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