Suspect in fatal Tacoma shooting charged

TACOMA — The Pierce County prosecutor charged a 19-year-old with manslaughter Tuesday for an accidental shooting in Tacoma Friday that killed a 17-year-old as they were playing with a gun.

Prosecutors say Tanielu Lotovaivai, 19, was in a parked car with several people passing around a .38-caliber-caliber revolver he thought was unloaded. He told police he was “playing around’ when he pointed it at the victim standing outside the car and pulled the trigger.

The shot fatally wounded Jalon Bea. The suspect helped take the victim to a hospital but fled because he was scared. He turned himself into police Monday. He said he didn’t know the gun was loaded.

The News Tribune reported that friends plan a rally to celebrate Bea’s life Tuesday evening at Lincoln Park in Tacoma.

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