• Orange County teen accidentally shot friend, made it look like suicide, investigators say

    By: WFTV Web Staff


    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - An Orange County teenager is facing charges after a story he told investigators about being with a friend who committed suicide didn't quite add up, detectives said.


    The victim, Laura Gomez-Cuartas, was an 18-year-old high school student who was shot in March in an Orlando home.  


    Investigators said the suspect, Giovanni Alejandro Gordono, 17, lied about his role in what really happened and tried to cover it up.


    Laura Gomez-Cuartas
    © 2018 Cox Media Group.


    Gordono is being charged as an adult.


    He faced an Orange County judge on Monday morning and was granted a a bond of just over $15,000.


    He posted bail Monday night and walked out of the Orange County Jail without making a comment other than to say any questions should go to his attorney.


    Gomez-Cuartas’ family found out Friday that there would be charges in the case after seven months of waiting.


    Documents released Monday indicate that prosecutors think Gordono accidentally shot the girl as she sat on a couch in her home.


    Gomez-Cuartas’ mother said that she’s relieved Gordono has been charged, but is frustrated it took as long as it did.


    “I was very pleased because all this time, I was trying to get justice for my daughter, her memory; justice for her,” said Lina Fabiola Cuartas. “I miss her a lot, she was everything to me. She still needs me. I’m going to be there for her because I want justice for her.”


    Raw: Mother of teen shot speaks out


    The investigative report details a long list of inconsistencies in Gordono’s story and the way he allegedly presented evidence to investigators.  


    He initially said the victim shot herself, according to the report.


    Detectives said along with repeatedly changing his story, Gordano hid a bullet casing and the victim’s phone in his backyard.


    Investigators wrote in the documents that Gordano eventually admitted he was dancing in his living room with a 9 mm handgun when it went off, killing Gomez-Cuartas.


    Gordono faces charges of manslaughter, evidence tampering, making false reports to law enforcement and possession of a firearm by a minor.

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