Crime & Justice

Girl in Palmdale shooting brain dead; 2 charged

A Palmdale sign.
A Palmdale sign.
City of Palmdale

Two Southern California brothers were charged with murder Friday after a 7-year-old girl hit in a car-to-car shooting in Palmdale was declared brain dead.

Prosecutors filed charges of premeditated murder and shooting at an occupied car against 22-year-old Jesus Peralta and 19-year-old Carlos Peralta.

They are accused of issuing a gang challenge to a man at a Palmdale gas station on Sept. 4. After a brief confrontation, the man drove away with his girlfriend and her two children. Prosecutors allege the brothers got in their car and pursued them, firing several rounds at the family's car.

Though the family was able to eventually evade the brothers, they discovered that 7-year-old Desiree Ybarra was shot in the head and taken to a hospital. The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner declared her brain dead late Thursday.

The case remains under investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Each brother is in custody on $8 million bail.

If convicted, each faces a maximum of 185 years to life.