Anaheim police have arrested two men suspected of shooting and killing 9-year-old Ximena Meza while she was playing outside her apartment complex with her sisters, police said.
A preliminary investigation shows two or more suspects drove down Greenacre Avenue from Crescent Avenue in a white car at about 7:15 p.m. on Wednesday.
One man exited the car and fired a handgun near where Meza was playing. One of the bullets struck the 9-year-old in the chest, police said.
Meza was taken to a local hospital, where she died about 45 minutes later, police said.
Lt. Bob Dunn said the suspects’ intended target was a group of men gathered near where the little girl was playing.
“Meza and her sisters were caught in the line of fire,” Dunn said in a statement.
The group of men ran from the scene, and the shooter jumped back into the white car and fled, police said.
Dunn said the shooting is believed to be gang related, and so far no other suspects have been located.
Police arrested Ricardo Cruz, 19, of Buena Park, and Alfredo Miguel Aquino, 20, of Anaheim at about 11 p.m. on Friday on suspicion of murder, Dunn said.
Both men are being held on $1 million bail, Dunn said.
Anaheim Police Chief Raul Quezada will hold a press conference at 2 p.m. today at Brookhurst Park, 2271 Crescent Ave.
Photo courtesy Claudia Castaneda