SWEETWATER, Tenn. (WATE) — Two people have now been charged with murder in a Sweetwater shooting that left a two-year-old girl dead.
A spokesperson for the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office said Liu Huerta and Itzhui Huerta now face first-degree murder charges in the death of two-year-old Alayna June Butts. They also face charges including attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault, burglary and reckless endangerment.
Butts was hospitalized after the shooting at a Hawkins Road home in Sweetwater on Wednesday, Feb 15. She was pronounced dead two days later.
According to an arrest warrant, Butts, the child’s mother, and three others were at the home when four people armed with guns arrived. The warrant identified them as Lemming Huerta, Itzhui Huerta, Liu Huerta and a fourth unidentified man.
According to the warrant, the mother said she struck Lenning Huerta and Itzhui Huerta with a metal pole multiple times and told them to leave the property, and then Lenning Huerta fired his pistol, striking the child in the head.
The mother told police that she dropped the pole and shoved the child from the doorway into her bedroom and that when she turned, more gunfire had erupted behind her. She told police that she yelled for someone to shoot back, but she was unsure who returned fire.
When police arrived, they found a man, identified as Lenning Huerta, lying dead on the porch. Police also said that they found two handguns laying in front of the residence.
Two other people injured in the shooting were taken to the hospital.
Liu Huerta was captured later that day by the sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Marshal’s Smokey Mountain Fugitive Task Force.
A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for March 31 at 10 a.m.