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Sandy • Three people died and two juveniles were injured after a shooting Tuesday on a public street while children were heading home from school.
A man, a woman and a boy died at the scene, Sandy police Sgt. Jason Nielsen said, and a boy and girl were in the hospital. The boy remained in critical condition Wednesday morning, and the girl was expected to survive.
Names of the dead were not immediately released as authorities continued to notify next of kin. However, Canyons School District officials confirmed Wednesday that the boy whose brother, a fifth-grader, reportedly was wounded was a kindergarten student at Brookwood Elementary School.
District spokesman Jeff Haney said counselors were at Brookwood on Wednesday, offering solace on what was the last day of the school year.
The shooting occurred about 3:45 p.m. in the middle of Alta Canyon Drive (about 8630 South), near its intersection with Littlecloud Road (2175 East).
Four of the victims were in an SUV on the street, Nielsen said, when the shooter rammed their car with his pickup. He then exited and opened fire, shooting at least four or five times, according to a witness.
The shooter was the man who died at the scene, reportedly of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The caller who reported the shooting said it was a domestic situation, though Nielsen said much of what led up to the man's violent outburst remains unclear.
Nielsen said a woman and two juveniles were apparently near the street in the moments leading up to the shooting. A woman police described as a "good Samaritan" who apparently was driving the SUV had stopped to assist and pick up the woman and juveniles, though police said it was unclear why she had stopped to help.
That is when the man driving the truck rammed the woman's SUV, jumped out and fired.
It remained unclear which woman involved in the incident had been killed. The relationships of the people involved also were unknown.
Nearby Brookwood Elementary was locked down in the uncertain moments immediately after the shooting, said Canyons School District spokeswoman Kirsten Stewart. Classes ended minutes before the shots were reported.
Many students were walking home some traveling west on the rolling Alta Canyon Drive, directly toward where the shooting would soon occur. Some students and parents turned around and went back to the school, Stewart said.
Many others found shelter in neighboring homes and businesses, district officials said.
Matthew Hennings, who lives nearby, said his 11-year-old son was walking home and had reached the base of a hill on Alta Canyon Drive just east of where the shooting occurred. The boy heard the gunshots, ran to a nearby house and called his father from the basement, where he and neighbors were hiding, to let him know he was safe.
Another student, 14-year-old Ridge Workman, had just left the bus and arrived at his house about a block from the scene of the shooting when he heard gunshots. He called his mother, Andrea Workman, yelling into the phone: "Mom, there's been a shooting!"
The two vehicles remained in the street as investigators processed the scene Tuesday night. Nielsen said the area likely would be closed through much of the night.
Hennings, Workman and other residents who gathered at the scene said the timing of the shooting was worrisome because of how many children were heading home from school. Stewart said the school would provide grief counselors for students Wednesday.
Kyler Brink, 13, and his family live less than 50 yards from the scene of the shooting, their back deck offering a bird's eye view of a crime scene Tuesday night. Kyler said he'd gotten home from Albion Middle School and was reading downstairs when he heard the screech of tires, then four to five gunshots. Nobody else was home, and he didn't have access to a phone to call his parents. He waited downstairs, then he came up several minutes later to see police swarming the scene, and someone being loaded into an ambulance.
Meanwhile, Kyler's mother, Carrie Papproth, was on her way home with his brother when they started hearing reports of a shooting in Sandy. As more information trickled in, they realized it had occurred in front of their home and they had no way to reach Kyler. Pepproth said it was "sheer panic."
"I could not get here quick enough," Papproth said. "I hugged him forever."
The affluent neighborhood, tree-lined and filled with large homes, is "usually really great, really safe," Andrea Workman said.
"We've never felt unsafe, and I think that's just changed," she said.
Tribune reporters Mariah Noble, Tiffany Frandsen and Bob Mims contributed to this story Domestic violence resources
Free and confidential help and support for victims and survivors of domestic violence is always available at 800-897-5465. Information on prevention can be found at udvc.org.