Daken Brewer, left, and Larry Renee Jefferson are two of the three suspects that were arrested and charged with attempted first-degree murder in the involvement of the Nov. 19 shooting in the parking lot of Hinkley High School. Photos provided by Aurora Police Department

AURORA | Three 16-year-old boys have been charged with attempted murder in a Nov. 19 Hinkley High School parking lot shooting that left three teenage students wounded, setting off a storm of investigation and worry across the region.

Police said their investigation revealed the shooting was gang-related after boys accused of shooting said they were armed at the school in fear they would be jumped during a fight with rival gang members.

Four other boys were named in arrest affidavits but have not been charged with crimes, even though they, too, were implicated in the court documents. Police declined to answer questions about the investigation, referring queries to the district attorney’s office.

Facing four counts of attempted first-degree murder and multiple other charges are Larry Renee Jefferson, Dalen Lenale Brewer and Diego Flores. Another boy, wounded while riding inside the truck, was not charged.

Aurora Public Schools SRO Darius Walls is seen with his service weapon drawn, Nov. 19, 2021 during a shooting in the Hinkley High School parking lot.

While the three teenagers are being tried as juveniles, their names were released because of their ages, the gravity of the crimes and because the charges were direct-filed in district court, according to 18th Judicial Court District officials.

The boys told police they armed themselves in preparation for a fight with “Boner Boys” gang members. 

One boy went to Hinkley in advance of the shooting, during lunch, to scout out members of the rival gang, saying that those gang members had shot up the house of others “several times in the past,” police said in an affidavit.

He said those gang members were there and a fight was imminent. He asked others to bring guns as back-up, in case any of the rival gang members at Hinkley were armed.

When asked by police why the need for guns, the boy said, “it’s the way it is in this town,” according to the affidavit.

Students are seen fleeing from the suspects vehicle and shots are fired from the moving truck, Nov. 19, 2021 in the parking lot of Hinkley High School.

The boys describe a chaotic event where gunfire erupted quickly and three of the boys fired from the truck window as they sped away.

None of the two other shooting victims told police they felt like they were targeted during the shooting, according to police arrest affidavits.

One student told police she was with her cousin inside a car in the parking lot and saw a pickup truck on the other side of the lot, near dumpsters. She said she heard gunfire, and then the driver of the truck came toward their car and drove past. As the truck drove toward them, she heard more shooting, then she realized she’d been shot in the backside and injured, according to the affidavit. Her cousin immediately drove her to a nearby hospital.

A boy wounded during the shooting said he had just returned to school after going for lunch nearby. He was with a friend inside his car with other students when they heard yelling. Thinking there was a fight about to erupt, he got out of the car and heard yelling, then shooting as students scattered. He began running for the front door of the school when he was shot in the back.

Numerous students described the truck and passengers to police. One student said he saw a black male get out of the truck and say, “You all are gonna get it,” according to the police statement.

Another student told police they saw a “Hispanic male with long hair on top with a pistol in his hand, firing it out of the driver’s side window of the truck,” according to the affidavit.

Aurora Public School school security officers Ronald Banks and Darius Walls were in a school district vehicle by the front of the school when they heard gunfire. 

“(Banks) said he exited the passenger side door and took cover behind the front of their vehicle,” according to the affidavit. 

He was unarmed at the time.

“(Banks) said he was yelling at the school children to get inside and to get down so they would not get shot.”

Turning toward the truck, Banks said he saw the muzzle of a gun coming out of the rear passenger window of the truck. He saw Walls then fire his gun at the truck as it moved past, exchanging gunfire. Neither officer was hit.

It’s unclear whether that’s how one of the boys inside the truck was injured by a bullet.

The boys sped away and split up.

Police were quick to identify them and spent the next few days tracking down everyone in the truck, saying they had sorted out who fired weapons during the melee.

Charges filed against each of the three boys named include:

  • 4 counts of attempted first-degree murder 
  • 1 count of first-degree assault
  • 1 count of second-degree assault
  • 1 count of possession of a weapon on school grounds
  • 2 crime-of-violence sentence enhancers

Jefferson was also charged with one count of using a prohibited large-capacity magazine during a crime.

Jefferson and Brewer are slated for court appearances next at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 15. Flores is slated for a hearing at 8:30 a.m. on March 7, 2022.

This shooting, and a shooting outside of Aurora Central High School days before, have prompted a community push to analyze and address growing gun violence, especially among teenagers and young adults.

APS district officials this week have closed school campuses during lunch and are providing additional security at the time. 

7 replies on “3 teen boys face attempted murder charges in gang-related Hinkley High School shooting   ”

  1. – why the need for guns, the boy said, “it’s the way it is in this town, (meaning Aurora”).

    Do you really believe anyone 16 years old who can make this statement can be helped by a social worker, anytime soon?

    He, his fellow gang member friends and all the gang members who they consider enemies should all be rounded up and the gangs broken up. Jail the leaders and harass the members after you get them out of our schools. Get a Council and Police Chief who understands the, timely, gravity of this situation.

    I’m scared for Aurora and social workers, I’m convinced, will not help at this time.

    Will we have to wait before they start their shooting wars in Ward IV, V. and VI?

  2. We have to realize that arresting young black males for shootings, just like the recent mass lootings, will skew the arrest statistics in a way that is unacceptable. APD will now have to find many more white people to arrest to make the statistics acceptable. Does anyone see a flaw in the logic being imposed by the legislature.

  3. What this story says has been needed. It finally says what Aurora has been unwilling to admit, gang power is rising and roving around the city. Why did the previous council continue to deny, to avoid to say what’s really happing and so obvious to anyone? Why did the APD chief have such a hard time to say “gangs”? What are you kidding? She was told to stay away from the significance of admitting such a thing. You want a politically correct city from top to bottom, you’ve had it. This was no different than the reality of being a full-blown sanctuary city, (an ordinance city paid for lawyers for illegal aliens’ debate) but the leadership we have had, won’t, can’t, and unwilling to tackle it. Next week, we have new council that want to deliver law and order, and will take the wheel. We have been battling and been suffering this gang issue because of stupid bury your head in the sand, city policies. Well now, it’s an opportunity for government politicians to rethink this past PC-ness to use its tools, and start cleaning up the city. This local gang machine dismantlement is a good of place to start.

  4. The article states, “While the three teenagers are being tried as juveniles”….that is not correct. These three teenagers are being tried as adults.

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