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Two teens arrested after Iowa carnival marred by fights and gunshots

WEST DES MOINES – Two teens have been arrested after an Iowa carnival was marred by fights and gunshots.

On Wednesday, June 15th, officers from the West Des Moines Police Department responded to two large fights and a report of shots being fired at a carnival event, attended by over a thousand people, in the parking lot of Valley West Mall in West Des Moines. The first fight was reported around 9:12 PM and was deescalated by an officer working at the event. Due to the size of the crowd and activity, additional officers were assigned to the area and were able to respond to another large fight where shots were fired by an unknown person around 9:34 PM.

During the investigation, westbound traffic on Interstate 235 was shut down briefly with assistance from the Clive and Windsor Heights police departments as officers searched for suspects on foot and using a K9 team. During the search, a handgun believed to have been used in the shooting was recovered. No shooting victims were identified; however, a juvenile male was transported to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries sustained during the second fight.

A juvenile male involved in the first fight was identified and charged with assault and interference with official acts. West Des Moines Police Detectives immediately began an extensive investigation to identify the shooter.

Throughout the remaining days the carnival was in operation, the West Des Moines Police Department worked directly with the carnival management and provided an increased uniformed police officer presence as well as undercover police officers. This was a precautionary effort to deter or take immediate action if anything additional would happen to occur.

West Des Moines Police Detectives along with the assistance of the West Des Moines Crime Scene Investigative Unit continued their investigation and eventually were able to match the spent shell casings from the scene with the recovered handgun located shortly after the incident.

On Wednesday, June 22nd the West Des Moines Police Department identified the suspect and executed a search warrant in relation to the incident where additional evidence was recovered. West Des Moines Police Detectives arrested a 14-year-old juvenile male from Des Moines, in relation to the shooting. The juvenile has been criminally charged with:

– Intimidation with a Dangerous Weapon – Class C Felony

– Assault Causing Bodily Injury – Serious Misdemeanor

The suspect has been transported by police to a juvenile detention facility where he currently remains incarcerated. There is no ongoing threat to the public, police claim.

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