A birthday party went bad Saturday night when a fight turned into a shooting.
According to Merced County sheriff's deputy Tom MacKenzie, family and friends were celebrating a birthday in the 7400 block of Walnut Avenue in Winton when party crashers came to the front door.
The crashers weren't invited, and a verbal argument started. The argument turned into a physical fight, which spilled onto a neighbor's yard. During the fight someone pulled a handgun and started shooting.
A 19-year-old man was shot several times in the upper body. The sheriff's office hasn't released the name of the victim.
The victim was airlifted to a Modesto hospital, where he is in critical condition. MacKenzie said the fight is believed to be gang-related, and started when members of one gang crashed the party of a rival gang. It is unknown how many people were involved in the fight or the circumstances that led to the fight.
MacKenzie said the fight is still under investigation.
Reporter Carol Reiter can be reached at (209) 385-2486 or firstname.lastname@example.org.