Woman shot and killed in Taylorsville

A West Valley woman was shot and killed as she was driving in an apartment complex early Monday morning. Shortly after 1 a.m., police received calls from some of the residents in the complex, reporting shots had been fired. Given that the complex is located right on the border of West Valley City and Taylorsville, officers from both West Valley and Unified police departments responded to the call. When they arrived investigators found several shell casings on the road.

The vehicle had also crashed roughly 225 feet away from where the shooting occurred, indicating that it was in motion when it was shot. It had coasted along at low speed before being stopped when it struck a parked car. The driver, 19-year-old Maria Alegandra Alaya, 19, was found in the drivers seat, dead of a single gunshot wound to her head. Investigators say they found at least one bullet hole in the windshield. The investigation is continuing to delve into the reasons why Ayala was at the complex that early in the morning, as she does not live there.

While investigators were going over the scene, police dispatch received a call regarding four teenagers running into an apartment complex in Davis County, one of them with a "bloody shirt." Officers went to the apartment and found three boy and a girl, all between the ages of 14-15. So far the four have been questioned, but are none are considered suspects. However, it was discovered that at least two of the teens are runaways and were taken to a juvenile detention facility.

Additionally, at least three of the four teens are known and documented gang members. Ayala is believed to have associated with the teens, but it remains unclear if the shooting was gang related. A search warrant to look through the apartment the teens were found in is pending.

Public domain photo

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