Man in critical condition after shooting outside Tooele library

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TOOELE -- A young woman is in shock after learning her boyfriend was shot in the head just outside the Tooele City Public Library Thursday morning. Police are now on the hunt for the shooter, whom they say was arguing with the victim prior to the gun being fired.

When they came out of their homes to investigate... they found a 20-year-old male who had sustained a gunshot wound to the head.

–Lt. Paul Wimmer

The victim, 20-year-old Levi Silveira, is in critical condition, but his girlfriend Bernadette Pacheco says even after being shot in the head, he is expected to live.

"He opened his eyes before I left the hospital," she said. "He squeezed my hand, so he's responding to that."

Pacheco sat on the curb talking to investigators Thursday morning after visiting her boyfriend in the hospital.

Bernadette Pacheco, Levi Silviera's girlfriend
Bernadette Pacheco, Levi Silviera's girlfriend

"He can hear us talking, he just can't talk because he has tubes down his throat and he's sedated," she said.

Police say Silveira was shot in the head around 1:30 a.m. just outside the Tooele City Public Library at 128 W. Vine Street. Witnesses reported hearing Silveira and another man arguing, and then a gun going off.

"When they came out of their homes to investigate, to see what it was, they found a 20-year-old male who had sustained a gunshot wound to the head," said Lt. Paul Wimmer with Tooele police.

Police say witnesses reported seeing a man running from the library after the shooting. However, they're not sure who that man is, or if he was alone.

Pacheco says Silveira was on his way to her house prior to the shooting, and obviously never showed up. She says she doesn't know why someone would want to hurt him.

"He gets along with everybody," she said. "He's a very friendly person."

Police have yet to determine a reason for the shooting. They say there is no indication of a drug deal and no clear motive. However, investigators say they don't think the shooting was random, and say they believe Silveira and the shooter are acquaintances.

"I don't think it was random. I don't think we have someone running around the neighborhood shooting innocent people," said Wimmer. "I think this was a couple of people who knew each other, and I think it was a case of an argument that escalated to the point of a gun being used."

Police say they do have a few leads they are following up on. They're also hopeful someone will come forward with information about who is behind the shooting.


Story compiled with contributions from Shara Park and Andrew Adams.

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