A 16-year-old boy in Colorado has been charged with murder after allegedly fatally shooting a teenage girl who had tried to break up with him weeks earlier, authorities said.
Jovanni Sirio-Cardona killed Lily Silva-Lopez on June 16 after allegedly breaking into her trailer home through a bedroom window and shooting her several times, according to a Facebook post from the Weld County District Attorney’s Office. Authorities later learned the pair had dated for about six months and Lily had tried to end their relationship about four weeks prior to the shooting, according to the DA’s office.
NBC News does not normally name minors accused of a crime, but Sirio-Cardona has been charged as an adult, according to the Weld County District Attorney’s Office. In addition to being charged with first- and second-degree murder, he is charged with first-degree burglary, aggravated robbery, and possession of a handgun by a juvenile, the DA’s office said.
It was not immediately clear Tuesday whether he has an attorney who can speak on his behalf or if he has entered a plea.
According to an arrest affidavit obtained by NBC affiliate KUSA of Denver, Lily told her 13-year-old brother to run when she saw Sirio-Cardona allegedly entering through her bedroom window. Sirio-Cardona allegedly found Lily in the hallway outside her room and shot her several times, and then allegedly demanded her brother hand over his phone, according to the affidavit obtained by KUSA.
Lily’s brother later went to a neighbor and told them that his sister had been shot and that Sirio-Cardona ran away after allegedly shooting her, and that neighbor called 911, KUSA reported.
When police arrived at Sirio-Cardona’s home following the shooting, he allegedly told his grandmother that “he did what he had to do and he shot someone,” KUSA reported, citing the affidavit.
Lily was pronounced dead at the scene, the DA’s office said. Her obituary says she was 15 years old and had just finished her sophomore year at Northridge High School.
“She enjoyed shopping, clothes, makeup and dancing,” the obituary says, adding that she also “loved to eat” and “loved animals.”
“She was a loving and caring friend with lots of spice,” the obituary adds.
Lily’s parents could not immediately be reached Tuesday.
Sirio-Cardona is due in Weld County court on Aug. 3 for a status conference, according to the DA’s office. He is being held on $2 million bond, the DA’s office said. It was not immediately clear where he is being held.
Representatives for the court, the DA’s office and the Greeley Police Department could not immediately be reached.
Citing the affidavit, KUSA reported that Lily’s brother told police Sirio-Cardona had been caught on camera walking by their home earlier that week, and that her mother told police that Sirio-Cardona allegedly put a gun in Lily’s mouth and demanded she tell him she loved him when she tried to break up with him about a month prior to the fatal shooting.
And less than a week before the killing, police responded to Lily’s home after a report that Sirio-Cardona had allegedly punched her in the face and hurt her arm, KUSA reported, citing the affidavit.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teen dating violence can include physical or sexual violence, stalking and psychological abuse. About 1 in 12 high school students experience physical or sexual dating violence, with female students experiencing higher rates than boys and LGBTQ young people experiencing higher rates than heterosexual students, the CDC says.
Intimate partner violence affects nearly half of people in the U.S., with about 1 in 2 women reporting having experienced sexual or physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner at some point in their lives, according to the CDC’s most recent report on intimate partner and sexual violence. About 44% of men report the same, according to the CDC.
Data from U.S. crime reports suggests approximately 1 in 5 homicide victims are killed by an intimate partner and that more than half of female homicide victims are killed by a current or former male intimate partner, according to the CDC.
The Teen Line provides peer-based support from trained teenagers who are available every evening to field calls and texts. Call 310-855-HOPE (4673), or toll-free at 800-TLC-TEEN from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. ET, or text TEEN to 839863 from 3 and 6 p.m. ET. Teen Line also responds to emails and has a message board.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence or the threat of domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline for help at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), or go to www.thehotline.org for anonymous, confidential online chats, available in English and Spanish. Individual states often have their own domestic violence hotlines as well.
Advocates at the National Domestic Violence Hotline field calls from both survivors of domestic violence as well as individuals who are concerned that they may be abusive toward their partners.