By Monica Land
BILOXI – A 17-year-old Biloxi teen remains behind bars after allegedly shooting his stepsister while playing with a 12-guage shotgun. Jonathan Ian Morales was charged with manslaughter culpable-negligence after the incident on May 30.
Sgt. Chris De Back of the Biloxi Police Department said Morales shot and killed 13-year-old Sadie Warden and initially told police Warden was the victim of a drive-by shooting.
De Back said police responded to the teen’s residence in the 600 block Michelle Drive just before 11 a.m. and found Warden outside the home lying on the ground. She had been shot once in the chest.
She was transported to Biloxi Regional where De Back said she was pronounced dead a “short time later.”
De Back said during their investigation, Morales’ story of a drive-by shooting began to unravel.
“The investigation contradicted the initial drive-by story,” De Back said. “The victim was actually shot inside the residence and not outside and there were several pieces of evidence recovered from the scene.”
De Back said it was Morales that notified the authorities of the shooting, but they learned that it was actually Morales that allegedly pulled the trigger.
“He was playing with a gun in a careless manner,” De Back said. “So we took him into custody without incident.”
Bond for Morales was set at $250,000.
De Back said he doesn’t recall police being called to the residence for any domestic issues in the past and he cannot confirm if Morales – who has been charged as an adult – has any mental deficiencies, but the case remains under investigation.
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