POSTED: Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - 1:28pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 - 9:07am
EL PASO — The search is on for the person who shot and killed a high school student in Northeast El Paso last night. Today, police released the victim's name and say they think it may have been a gang-related shooting.
18 year old Christian Duran died from 3 gunshots to the chest, just a few blocks away from Andress High School, where he was a student. Duran's death is El Paso's first murder of the year.
Some students at the high school said today they're sure he was gang affiliated, but one student said he was a close friend of Duran's, and that the teen was a nice guy.
Christian Duran was sitting in a dark car Monday night, when a shooter put three bullets in his chest. Paramedics tried performing CPR on Duran but they could not save him. They rushed the teen to University Medical Center, where he died.
Investigators suspect the shooting was gang-related -- some students at Andress High School say there's no doubt about it.
"I know this guy was gang affiliated and he went onto another gang's turf, and well, you can't do that so he got shot," says Omar Montes.
"He was gang-affiliated and there's only two places that's going to get you. Either jail or coffin.," says Isaac Ramirez.
"Me and Christian we're really close friends, we knew each other since 3rd grade. It's pretty depressing. I just barely found out this morning," says Aaron Meeks.
Aaron Meeks says Christian stayed out of trouble and didn't have any enemies.
"Christian wasn't a trouble maker. He had good grades, he didn't have a problem with anybody. He would always keep his nose where it belongs, you know?" Meeks says.
NewsChannel 9 obtained photos of Christian Duran from Facebook, where the teen is seen flashing a gang sign.
The school district decided to have extra security on campus today. Grief counselors were also available to speak with students about the shooting. These students say the area is prone to gang violence but they accept that it's a reality in their neighborhoods.
"It doesn't really bother me because it's life, you grow up with it. There are choices you have to make, choices you don't," says Motnes.
"It's just whatever. I mean, everywhere you go, there's always going to be gangs or that one stupid person, you know?" says Ramirez.