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17-year-old gang member charged with manslaughter in shooting death of 14-year-old

Prosecutors charged a 17-year-old Yakima gang member with first-degree manslaughter in connection with the shooting death of a 14-year-old in September.

Kent Anton Hewitt was also charged with second-degree unlawful firearms possession, based on his prior felony conviction for taking a motor vehicle without permission, in Yakima County Superior Court Monday.

While he is being held in the Yakima County Juvenile Justice Center on account of his age, Hewitt will be tried as an adult.

Hewitt is accused of shooting Charlie Taylor, a fellow Norteño gang member, with a shotgun on Sept. 14. Taylor was shot at a home in the 1100 block of Willow Street and was first taken to Good Samaritan Health Care Center before his associates dropped him off at Virginia Mason Memorial hospital, where he died, court documents said.

Witnesses told investigators that Hewitt was playing with a shotgun and had been told to put it down when it went off, hitting Taylor in the leg. Officers found the gun hidden in the house’s attic, while the car used to drive Taylor to the hospital was left in Wapato, court documents said.

Detectives identified Hewitt from surveillance video footage, a probable cause affidavit said.

In addition to taking a motor vehicle, Hewitt’s prior convictions include third-degree theft, drug possession, fourth-degree assault and malicious mischief.

He is being held in lieu of $500,000 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned Oct. 14.

Reach Donald W. Meyers at dmeyers@yakimaherald.com or on Twitter: donaldwmeyers, or https://www.facebook.com/donaldwmeyersjournalist.

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