Two boys, ages 8 and 9, shot dead while playing with kittens in their backyard

Lebanon, Pennsylvania is grappling with the tragic loss of two young boys, victims of a senseless shooting that took place in their backyard on Tuesday night.

Jesus and Sebastian Perez-Salome, just 8 and 9 years old, were playing with kittens when their lives were abruptly and violently cut short. Authorities have now charged two individuals in connection with the deaths of the brothers.

The children’s mother was working at a nearby store during the incident. Upon hearing the shots, she rushed to the scene, discovering the unimaginable.

Her third child, aged 13, was fortunately away attending a school event. Both boys, remembered as “innocent and polite,” had a fondness for superheroes and were inseparable in their play.

In response to the tragedy, a GoFundMe campaign established to support the grieving family has raised over $15,000.

Lebanon County District Attorney Pier Hess Graf announced that 22-year-old Alex Torres Santos and a 16-year-old male face multiple charges, including criminal homicide, aggravated assault, and conspiracy. A third suspect remains at large.

Santos was under house arrest for unrelated offenses before the boys’ deaths, with an ankle monitor in place.

A stray bullet also injured a 33-year-old neighbor, who is currently recovering from surgery. Authorities suggest that the third victim, 19-year-old Joshua Lugo-Perez, was the intended target, resulting from an earlier disagreement. Despite sharing the same residence, Lugo-Perez had no familial connection to the young boys.

Authorities apprehended Santos at his residence and discovered multiple firearms and ammunition. The juvenile suspect was later found in a nearby apartment. The district attorney has indicated that the accused could face the death penalty, a decision yet to be made.