17-year-old arrested in connection with assault on minor in Mesa

Jan 12, 2024, 10:02 AM | Updated: Mar 12, 2024, 9:40 am

Side of a Mesa, Arizona, police department vehicle...

Eight police agencies across the Valley will form an East Valley Critical Incident Response Team to investigate critical force incidents. (Facebook File Photo/City of Mesa Police Department)

(Facebook File Photo/City of Mesa Police Department)

PHOENIX — A teenager was arrested Thursday in connection with an assault on a minor in Mesa last year, authorities said.

The incident was reported to the Mesa Police Department a week before the arrest.

A man said his stepson was assaulted near Val Vista Drive and Pueblo Avenue, between Broadway Road and Southern Avenue, on May 29, 2023.

Detectives developed probable cause to arrest a 17-year-old boy, police said.

The suspect was booked into the Maricopa County juvenile detention center for aggravated assault. His name was not released because he is a minor.

Is Mesa assault related to gang known as Gilbert Goons?

Mesa Police declined to say if the case was related to the string of East Valley attacks allegedly involving a gang of youths known as the Gilbert Goons.

“The information we have provided is all that our detectives want to release at this time because the case is still active,” Detective Richard Encinas told KTAR News 92.3 FM in an email.

Earlier this week, multiple arrests were made in violent assaults allegedly perpetrated by groups of youths in the East Valley. Prosecutors have implied that the Gilbert Goons may have been involved.

Are recent arrests connected fatal attack on Preston Lord?

Previous media reports have linked the Goons to last year’s fatal attack on 16-year-old Preston Lord. Lord was assaulted outside a Halloween party in Queen Creek on Oct. 28 and died of his injuries at a hospital two days later.

The Queen Creek Police Department submitted charges against seven suspects in the Lord case to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office on Dec. 28, but no arrests directly connected to the teen’s death have been announced.

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell said last week that it will take some time to sort through the submission, which included an 1,800-page report and about 2,000 pieces of evidence, including 600 videos.

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17-year-old arrested in connection with assault on minor in Mesa