2nd brother pleads guilty to murder in Orem church parking lot shooting death

Sep 20, 2023, 6:47 AM

A second brother pleaded guilty Monday to murder, admitting to shooting and killing a 16-year-old i...

A second brother pleaded guilty Monday to murder, admitting to shooting and killing a 16-year-old in an Orem church parking lot during a drug-related robbery. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

PROVO — A second brother pleaded guilty Monday to murder, admitting to shooting and killing a 16-year-old in an Orem church parking lot.

Andre Rodriguez, now 18, of Spanish Fork, pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of murder, a second-degree felony; aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony; and felony discharge of a firearm causing injury, a second-degree felony, for his role in the death of Camden Hales.

The shooting occurred on June 2, 2021, at 1780 N. 165 East in Orem. Rodriguez approached a car with a rifle in hand during an arranged drug deal and ordered those in the car to turn over their money and drugs, according to a statement supporting his guilty plea.

He admitted that he went up to the car while his brother was inside the vehicle negotiating a drug deal, “presented a .308 AR rifle and demanded that the victims give him their money and their drugs, or he would shoot them.”

A struggle ensued leading to injuries of two people in that car, his statement says, and after Rodriguez’s brother got out of the car with the rifle that had been pulled inside, Rodriguez pulled a 9 mm gun out of his belt and fired additional shots at the car as it drove away.

One of those final shots caused Hales’ death.

The guilty plea was entered right as Rodriguez’s jury trial was scheduled to begin. As a result of a plea deal, the murder charge against Rodriguez was reduced from a first-degree felony to a second-degree felony, and two counts of felony discharge of a firearm and one count of obstructing justice were dismissed.

Andre Rodriguez’s older brother, Sidney Rodriguez, pleaded guilty on Aug. 10 to manslaughter and aggravated robbery for his role in the incident, admitting he knew there was a plan for a robbery.

He is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 10, while Andre Rodriguez is now scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 6.

A man who drove both brothers to the drug deal was not charged. He told officers he did not know that it was going to be a robbery and drove away afterward because he was scared.

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2nd brother pleads guilty to murder in Orem church parking lot shooting death