Videos Show Kidnapped Girl Was Shot by Deputies

Savannah Graziano was following officer's instructions
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 2, 2024 5:28 PM CDT

A teenage girl who had been kidnapped by her father was following sheriff's deputies' instructions and appeared to be surrendering when deputies fatally shot her during a gun battle on a Southern California highway, according to recently released video and audio. Savannah Graziano, 15, was shot and killed as she ran toward San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies amid a hail of gunfire on Sept. 27, 2022. Her father, 45-year-old Anthony Graziano was also fatally shot. The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department released the audio and video clips, including a heavily produced and narrated 15-minute video, in response to public records requests made by the AP and other media outlets.

  • For months, officials would not say whether it was her father or the deputies who killed Savannah Graziano, the AP reports. In the new video, the narrator says the Grazianos "were struck by deputy rounds and died of their injuries."

  • The shootout occurred on an desert interstate east of Los Angeles in Hesperia, about 35 miles north of Fontana, where the teen's father had shot and killed her mother—his estranged wife—a day earlier.
  • Footage shows Savannah leave the vehicle and crouch on the ground before approaching a group of deputies, the Guardian reports. A California Highway Patrol official can be heard saying on the radio, "Girl is out, the girl is out, guys. She's out on the passenger side."
  • In audio from the belt of one the deputies, he can be heard saying, "Come to me! Come, come, come … walk, walk, walk." He then yells, "Stop! Stop shooting her! He's in the car! Stop! She's okay!" At least four shots were heard after that.
  • The agency has yet to release autopsy reports for the teenager, her father, or her mother, Tracy Martinez, and it has not named the deputies involved.
(More police shooting stories.)

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