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PD: 1 dead, 1 hurt in shooting outside of Peoria home

Carol Avenue shooting
Posted at 10:51 AM, Dec 13, 2021

PEORIA, AZ — A woman is accused of shooting two people, killing one, outside of her home in Peoria last week.

Police were called to the home near 91st and Olive avenues after 11 p.m. Friday when a woman called to report a shooting.

According to police documents, the woman, identified as 43-year-old Bernadette Laura De La Garza, said she shot two unarmed people who were at her home.

Bernadette de la garza

Police say the victims are the estranged stepchildren of her husband, who she has been married to for several years.

De La Garza reportedly told police she saw her husband laying outside near the stepchildren.

Police say De La Garza’s husband was heavily intoxicated and had been outside smoking.

De La Garza told police she thought her husband was dead and needed to defend him, so she went inside and grabbed her gun from a safe. She reportedly racked the gun and said she tripped and fell, and the gun went off.

She continued to fire, not knowing “if (the other victim) was going to retaliate.” She reportedly fired about six shots.

One of the victims died at the scene and the other suffered multiple gunshot wounds and was taken to a hospital in critical condition.

De La Garza was booked into jail on one count of second-degree murder and one count of aggravated assault.

She said she never saw the victims threaten or touch her husband and did not see any weapons.