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Suspect charged: young girl shot dead, woman injured

Suspect charged in Helena for fatally shooting a young girl and injuring a woman
Posted at 6:07 PM, Jul 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-12 14:35:40-04

HELENA — A judge set bail at $1 million for Tony Louis Valez, the Helena man accused of shooting and killing a young girl and injuring a woman on Sunday, July 10, 2022.

Valez appeared in Lewis & Clark County Justice Court on Monday afternoon.

Court documents state that Valez was in his home when he believed that the woman and another individual had come to his residence in order to remove him.

Documents say that neither individual made any threatening gestures or verbal threats towards Valez.

Police say that Valez admitted that he snapped, retrieved a firearm from his bedroom, and then began shooting at the two people.

The woman was struck by the gunfire. Bullets missed the second individual but hit an 8-year-old girl nearby.

The young girl was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.

According to police, no other individuals were injured. The woman is expected to survive. The name of the girl who was killed has not been released.

Valez has been charged with four felonies - one count of deliberate homicide, two counts of attempted deliberate homicide, and one count of criminal endangerment.

“I wish my officers and myself back when didn’t have to respond to things like this because it's no worse thing than going to, when you have a kid that's hurt,” said Helena Chief of Police Brett Petty.