Arrest Made In Shooting Death Of 17-Year-Old Casper High School Student

Casper police confirmed on Wednesday they’ve made an arrest in the early Tuesday morning shooting death of a local 17-year-old girl. The victim has been identified by the coroner as Lenea Brown.

DK
Dale Killingbeck

May 15, 20244 min read

A 17-year-old Casper girl was shot to death the morning of May 14, 2024, in the 6800 block of Buckboard Road on Casper’s southwest side.
A 17-year-old Casper girl was shot to death the morning of May 14, 2024, in the 6800 block of Buckboard Road on Casper’s southwest side. (Dale Killingbeck, Cowboy State Daily)

The Casper Police Department has confirmed an arrest has been made in the Tuesday morning shooting death of a local 17-year-old girl.

While CPD spokesperson Amber Freestone told Cowboy State Daily that there has been an arrest, the suspect hasn’t been identified because he or she is a minor. The case has been turned over to the Natrona County Attorney’s Office.

“This is an ongoing investigation and per state statute, CPD will not be releasing any information about the minors involved,” she said.

In the meantime, Natrona County Coroner James Whipps has identified the juvenile victim of Tuesday’s shooting as Lenea Brown, 17, of Casper.

Chief Deputy Coroner Darin Kiester said an autopsy on Brown is scheduled for Wednesday.

The incident began early Tuesday when police were called to the 6800 block of Buckboard Road on Casper’s southwest side, and continued investigating for several hours at a residence in an adjacent neighborhood.

The coroner’s release said Casper Police are investigating an incident that happened in the 6800 block of Buckboard Road in Casper on the city’s southwest side. Police were at a residence in an adjacent neighborhood for several hours on Tuesday.

School Counseling

Natrona County School District spokesperson Tanya Southerland said she could not share information about what grade Brown is at Natrona County High School.

“Natrona County High School will continue to offer counseling to students (and) they will remain available throughout the school year,” she said. “The NCHS school community is supporting students and each other during this devastating time. We encourage parents and guardians to reach out to their child’s school if they have questions regarding available resources in our schools and community to support their child.”

Southerland also said Three Trails Counseling Center provides confidential and free counseling services to school district employees should they require help.

Tuesday’s shooting, which follows the April 7 fatal stabbing of Bobby Maher, 14, at the city’s mall allegedly by two 15-year-old boys, was on the minds of Casper City Council members at their Tuesday evening work session.

Mayor Steve Cathey said he extended his “deepest condolences, prayers, and support to the family” of Brown.

“As a community we are saddened and call once again to reflect on what we can do to work against violence, especially violence carried out against our youth,” he said. “We need to continue to work, we are going to be looking at some other options, but we have to somehow get the message to our youth that there are better ways of resolving conflict than through violence.”

Frustration

Councilman Ray Pacheco, a social worker, said he also extended his sympathies to the family and those affected. He also said he’s “frustrated.”

“I think we have to figure out the collaboration part that we need to do. It hurts me as a social worker, it hurts me as a counselor and youth worker for 27 years that we continue to face these things that happen very regularly in big cities and it’s bled over to us,” he said. “There are no easy answers. Collaboration works if we work together. … We’ll continue to work toward that, all of us up here. But my heart goes out to our community.”

Councilman Kyle Gamroth encouraged other councilors, professionals and interested people to go to the Blue Heart Collaborative meeting set for 5-7 p.m. Friday at the YMCA in Casper. The group was formed after Maher’s death to try and bring community professionals together to deal with the issue of a growing culture of youth violence in the city.

“I believe the intent is to kind of take the first steps in having a community discussion about the things that we all as citizens, as entities, as nonprofits can be doing to create a more healthy community especially in light of the other loss of life,” Gamroth said. “I think it is important, and I certainly am going to try and attend myself.”

Blue Heart Collaborative organizer DC Martinez also has set up a Blue Heart Collaborative meeting in June at the YMCA for area youth.

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

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