Two people were staying there to watch the place: Lal's 15-year-old brother, and Nerrek Galley, a 21-year-old friend who was very close to the family.
Mr. Galley was best friends with Ms. Lal.
It was about 8:00 at night in Longmont, Colorado, when Ms. Lal and her cousin hid in a closet and made noises.
Her brother and Mr. Galley were playing video games in the basement when they heard strange sounds. Mr. Galley thought an intruder was in the house, so he went looking. He had a gun. He also gave a gun to the 15-year old for protection.
When he entered the room where the two pranksters were hiding in the closet, Ms. Lal jumped out to scare him.
Mr. Galley shot her.
Neighbors didn't hear the shot, but they heard yelling and screaming. They saw people jump into a car and speed away, leaving the front door wide open. There was blood on the steps. An abandoned cell phone was lying on the ground.
Mr. Galley drove Ms. Lal to Longmont United Hospital, where, a little after 9 pm, she was pronounced dead.