2 suspects linked to two drive-by shootings through ballistic testing

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) -Two people suspected in two drive-by shootings at the same home in September are now facing federal charges after a “hit” came back as a match on ballistic testing to the suspects.

According to a press release issued by Melodie Rydalch, U.S. Department of Justice, Edward Peralta-Moran was charged with possessing a firearm following a felony conviction and Ramon Avila was charged with possession of a stolen firearm on Monday.

The two were officially linked to one of the shootings through the use of the National Integrated Ballistics Information Network (NIBIN). The Utah Bureau of Forensic Services analysts used the casings recovered from the Sept 3 shooting, to a .45 caliber Smith and Wesson firearm recovered from Peralta-Moran.

According to the complaint, Unified Police Department officers responded to a drive-by shooting at the same home on Sept. 1. Officers observed bullet entry points on the exterior of the home and collected six 9mm shell casings but were unable to identify anyone involved in the shooting

Two days later, a Unified Police officer heard gunshots in the area of 4700 South and 2700 West and observed a car leaving the area and entering I-215. At that same time, dispatch started receiving calls reporting shots fired at the same residence as the Sept. 1 incident.

Responding officers observed numerous new bullet entry points on the exterior of the home and collected six expended .45 caliber shell casings and a .223 projectile.

The occupant of the home told officers he had been in a recent confrontation Peralta-Moran, a known Sureno-affiliated convicted felon.

Peralta-Moran was on state probation and had an outstanding arrest warrant.

The press release stated on Sept. 4, Sandy City police officers responded to a report of firearms thefts at The Amory Firearms and Shooting Range.

The manager told them three males entered the business and stole three handguns while he was speaking to another customer.

Store surveillance video showed the men entering the Armory and go to different areas in the store and take guns from behind the counter and from the store manager’s office.

The store manager was also able to partially identify the car the men were in which was similar to the car seen leaving the area of the drive-by on Sept. 3.

Officers were able to locate Peralta-Moran and Avila on Sept. 5, after observing the car and executing a traffic stop.

According to the complaint, Peralta-Moran told officers he paid someone to shoot up the house on Sept. 3, and admitted the Lexus was used in the Sept. 3 shooting and the .45 Smith and Wesson officers found on the pavement on the passenger side of the Lexus was used in the drive-by shooting.

Officers executed a search warrant at Peralta-Moran’s residence and found a Glock 19 handgun concealed in his bed – one of the handguns stolen from The Armory.

Peralta-Moran is appearing Wednesday morning on his charges and a warrant is pending for Avila.

Both Peralta-Moran and Avila face a potential 10-year sentence, a fine of $250,000, and a three-year term of supervised release if convicted.


UPDATE: (9/5/19) – Unified Police Department has confirmed the arrest of two suspects involved in two drive by shootings at the same house over the weekend.

In a press release issued by UPD Detective Kevin Mallory, Edward Peralta-Moran, 19 and Ramon Avila, 21, were both taken into custody Wednesday after detectives developed information regarding a vehicle they believed was involved in the shootings.

The vehicle was located in Midvale on Wednesday and a traffic stop was conducted. At the time of the stop, a stolen handgun was thrown from the passenger side of the vehicle.

Both Avila and Peralta-Moran were taken into custody. During a search of the car, and a second stolen handgun was found, Mallory stated.

During the investigation, and an execution of a search warrant on a home in Sandy, additional firearms, ammunition and drugs were also found.

Mallory said the calibers of the firearms found in the vehicle and at the residence were consistent with weapons used the night of September 3 and two of the handguns recovered at the home were reported stolen from a gun range in Sandy on September 4.

Avila is facing felony discharge of a firearm and theft by receiving stolen property. Peralta-Moran is facing felony discharge of a firearm, possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, theft by receiving stolen property and violation of probation or parole.

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TAYLORSVILLE, Utah (ABC4 News) – Police are continuing to investigate why a home in Taylorsville has been shot at twice in two days.

According to Unified Police Department, the first incident happened Sunday night around 10:20 p.m. when multiple shots were fired at a home on Chantelle Drive.

Detectives said in that case, there was one occupant in the home at the time of the shooting. The home was damaged but no one was injured.

On Tuesday night, detectives said they responded to the home after a neighbor called police after hearing about 10 to 20 shots fired.

A witness said there was a vehicle they heard speeding off but police do not have any description of the car.

When police arrived on scene, they found evidence that the same house had been hit several times. The home itself was not hit, and there was no new damage to the home.

Detectives said their forensics teams do have some evidence they are processing but no suspects have been identified. During invertivews with the homeowner, law enforcement said they have so far not been able to identify why the same home has been targeted.

Anyone with information is asked to call Unified Police at 801-743-7000.

This is a developing story. Updates will be posted as they become available.

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