One adult, two juveniles arrested in air rifle assault spree.
Two men have been arrested in a spate of nearly 30 incidents of BB assaults that peppered the Canyon Country area over the last two months.
A Saugus 18 year old and a 17-year old Canyon Country resident were arrested Tuesday night after someone spotted individuals in a silver Honda Accord shooting at vehicles with a BB gun near Sierra Highway and Soledad Canyon Road.
Deputies found the car parked on Sierra Highway as two men were getting out of the vehicle; the men were detained and found to be in possession of two BB guns, a laser sight for one of the guns and several BBs and Co2 cartridges.
Both were arrested after deputies obtained additional information linking them directly to a recent assault. During questioning, both suspects admitted being involved in as many as 23 incidents of vandalism and two assault incidents relating to the unlawful use of air guns in the Santa Clarita Valley.
They were booked at the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station on suspicion of felony charges of vandalism and assault with a deadly weapon. The adult is being held in lieu of $30,000 bail pending future court proceedings. The juvenile was on probation for vandalism and is being held at Sylmar Juvenile Hall without bail pending future court proceedings.
In a separate and unrelated BB gun incident Wednesday, deputies responded to Bouquet Canyon Road and Haskell Canyon Road, Saugus, to a woman’s report that the back window of her car was shot out as she drove down Haskell Canyon Road. While thoroughly checking the area, one deputy located a residence in the 27700 block of Caraway Lane, which backs up to Haskell Canyon Road. The deputy saw the upstairs window was open and that it was missing a screen. Deputies conducted a door knock at the location and found a juvenile resident, MB/17, was in possession of a pump powered AR-17 BB air gun rifle.
The deputies also determined the juvenile was already on probation for vandalism. Further investigation revealed the subject was apparently directly connected to the crime. He was arrested and booked at the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station on suspicion of felony assault with a deadly weapon. He is being held without bail and will be transferred to Sylmar Juvenile Hall where he will await criminal proceedings.
Deputies report that the BB gun recovered in this incident resembled an AR-15 assault rifle and did not have any markings indicating it was an air gun. The picture has been provided to demonstrate how difficult it is for deputies to determine the threat level of any gun. Deputies are concerned the incident could have resulted in a different outcome because of the subject’s actions and the fact that he pointed it out of an upstairs window and fired a projectile at a moving occupied vehicle.
Deputies are strongly encouraging all owners of such guns to handle them with safety of themselves and others in mind and talk with their teenagers about the dangers posed by the possession and use of such guns. The guns should not be looked at or handled as toys.
Sheriff’s officials are advising that the commission of unlawful acts such as shooting projectiles at people, moving vehicles, windows, or other objects is a felony. Those caught could face felony assault charges and, if convicted, may face significant prison sentences. Officials are also advising of the potential dangers associated with such actions and the possibility that a motorist or bicyclist could lose control of their vehicle or bicycle causing serious injury or death, at which point the perpetrators could face even more severe felony charges.
Parents who are aware that their teenagers possess such BB or pellet guns, may also be held civilly liable for damages to property or personal injury due to their unlawful or negligent use. Parents are urged to talk to their teenagers about the dangers associated with irresponsible and unlawful actions pertaining to air guns and the severe consequences that they could face if caught in violation of the law.