Juvenile suspect arrested in connection to fatal shooting near Banning High School

A juvenile suspect was facing possible charges Wednesday in connection with an apparent gang-related shooting near Banning High School in Wilmington that left a young man dead and two other people wounded.

The gunfire was reported about 3:15 p.m. Tuesday in the area of Pacific Coast Highway and Broad Avenue, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Richard Tafoya, 18, died at a hospital, said coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter. Tafoya was a former student at the school, police said.

"I grew up with him for years," Julian Martinez, a friend of the victim, said. "I mean he means a lot to me. That's my boy."

Martinez said he heard the shots after school and went toward the corner of Broad and Pacific Coast Highway to see what happened.

"I got closer to it and I was like that's my bro," he said. "I didn't know how to take it, it's just hard."

"I saw like teachers trying to help him out and they said he's breathing," another student said. "Then the cops came and they told us to move."

Two teenage boys who are students at the school also were taken to a hospital for treatment and were expected to recover, police said.

LAPD Officer Sal Ramirez confirmed the suspect is a juvenile, but no details on the arrest were immediately released.

Tafoya's family members acknowledged that he was a gang member, according to local news outlets, which reported that the suspect is an underage boy.

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