Shots Fired Into 9-Year-Old Girl’s Bedroom; Bullet Narrowly Misses Her

Sep 20, 2020, 4:17 PM | Updated: Nov 29, 2022, 11:00 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A little girl is lucky to be alive after a stray bullet went through her bedroom window, just inches from her head.

The shooting happened near 200 East and Hampton Avenue in the Liberty Park area of Salt Lake City Saturday night.

The little girl’s family said they fear this was no accident.

“It’s terrifying,” said the girl’s father, John Wilson. “My daughter is completely terrified of it. She’s scared. She’s afraid to sleep in her own room now.”

With its shady trees and school around the corner, this quaint little neighborhood is full of promise.

“We know the people in this neighborhood very well,” said Wilson. “I’ve lived here for 25 years.”

But that’s where the charm ends, and Saturday night became a nightmare for John Wilson and his family.

“Someone had parked in front of my house,” said Wilson. “I went out there and asked them if they would move their car.”

Wilson said things quickly escalated.

“They just started giving me a bunch of guff and swearing at me and cursing,” Wilson said of a group of older teenagers. 

That’s when John decided to walk away, but he said the confrontation didn’t end there.

“About 30 minutes later, we heard 8 gunshots,” he said.

The shots were fired from the back of the house, through his 9-year-old daughter’s bedroom window to be exact.

Wilson thinks one bullet made it inside.

“She was sitting up in her bed, reading with a flashlight,” he said. “She heard the glass break when the bullet came through, and then she felt something kind of whiz past her. The bullet hit right over here, just inches away from her.”

Then John’s daughter heard something.

“She heard like a group of people laughing or something. Just a few seconds after that, we hear a car with squealing tires taking off,” Wilson said.

John said the bullet made a straight trajectory through the window and into a wall.

“The bullet came in here and went out of his forehead,” Wilson said, referring to the Winnie the Pooh teddy bear in his daughter’s room. “This was sitting in the window right where the bullet went through.”

It appears the shots were fired from the other side of the backyard fence, which borders the Liberty Elementary school soccer field.

Salt Lake City Police officers collected multiple bullet casings on the ground near the goal post.

John thinks the incident was a targeted attack — retaliation for confronting the group parked in front of his house.

“Absolutely, there’s no doubt about it,” he said.

Wilson said safety in the neighborhood has been on a downward spiral over the last year. He hopes things change before it’s too late.

“All of a sudden, now we’re having attacks on individuals,” he said. “My daughter came very close to being hit in the head with a bullet.”

Anyone with information has been asked to contact Salt Lake City Police.

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Shots Fired Into 9-Year-Old Girl’s Bedroom; Bullet Narrowly Misses Her