HOMESTEAD (CBSMiami) – Miami-Dade Police have identified the 15-year-old boy accused of fatally shooting a student on a school bus early Tuesday morning.
Detective Roy Rutland said Jordyn Alexander Howe has been charged with manslaughter and carrying a concealed firearm in the death of Lourdes Guzman-DeJesus, 13. Rutland said through the course of their investigation and questioning of a “remorseful” Howe, it was determined that the shooting was accidental. Howe, who is a student at Somerset Academy Silver Palms in Homestead, will be charged as a juvenile.
“Obviously based on the charge manslaughter and based on the investigation and the evidence and based on interviews we conducted with him, it does appear to be an accident,” said Det. Rutland. “I can assure you there was a coomprehensive interview done regarding that gone and its whereabouts and where it originated and based on what we’re hearing it doesn’t appear that anyone else will be charged at this time.”
Guzman-DeJesus, who also went by Jina, was airlifted to Miami Children’s Hospital after the shooting. She was pronounced dead at the hospital.
It happened around 6:45 a.m. at SW 296th Street and SW 137th Avenue.
Miami-Dade police said the shooting happened on a private transportation bus which was taking students to several charter schools. Police spokesman Detective Alvaro Zabaleta said the 13-year old girl who was shot was headed to Palm Glades Preparatory Academy, her 7-year old sister was also on the bus attends Summerville Advantage Academy.
Det. Zabaleta said a male who they believe shot Guzman-DeJesus was taken into custody and questioned. Police recovered the gun used in the shooting.
Sources close to the investigation tell CBS4 News that Howe took the .40 caliber handgun from the home he shares with his mother. The family reportedly did not realize that the gun was missing until they got a call from police. Sources say Howe told investigators that he knew the gun was loaded and even passed it around the bus before the gun went off and struck Guzman-DeJesus in the neck.
Det. Zabaleta said the driver and eight other children on the bus were not injured. Police interviewed them to try and determine what happened.
“We are dealing with small children so the questioning process is going to be a lot different,” said Zabaleto. “The children, they are already shaken up over what they had to witness and on top of that you have to question them. This is going to be a very slow and tedious process.”
Late Tuesday, Guzman-DeJesus’ mother Ady released a statement to the media which read, in part:
“13 years ago god blessed my family with a beautiful angel. Lourdes (Jina) Guzman-Dejesus with the years I seen her smile laugh and be silly feels like jus (sic) yesterday I saw her running around in her pamper dancing and modeling for the camera. times and moments spent with Jina are memories I will cherish and keep in my heart for ever. Jina has always been fun loving, helpful, a happy girl who got good grades loved school was on honer roll loved her little bother an sisters and had lots of love to give and had lots of love given to her. I have and will always be proud of her. In this devastating moment I want to just say thank you for all the concerns and prayers, my family and I greatly appreciate it.”