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Suspect in shooting death of 14-year-old to appear in Yakima County Superior Court

A 17-year-old suspected of shooting a 14-year-old last month is expected to appear in Yakima County Superior Court on Thursday afternoon.

While the suspect in the death of Charlie Taylor is being held in the Yakima County Juvenile Justice Center because of his age, Yakima County Superior Court Judge Ruth Reukauf signed an order Wednesday to send his case to adult court.

State law allows prosecutors to automatically transfer juvenile cases involving serious violent crimes such as murder and first-degree manslaughter out of the juvenile justice system, Yakima County Prosecuting Attorney Joe Brusic said.

A Superior Court docket erroneously stated that he would appear in Superior Court Wednesday.

Yakima police arrested the suspect at his home Tuesday afternoon without incident, Capt. Jay Seely said. Both the victim and suspect are documented Norteño gang members.

Taylor was killed by a blast from a shotgun the night of Sept. 14 at a home in the 1100 block of Willow Street. He was first taken to Good Samaritan Health Care Center before being redirected to Virginia Mason Memorial hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Witnesses told police that the suspect was playing with a shotgun, pointing it at people, when it went off, hitting Taylor in the leg. Police found the gun hidden in the attic of the home, the affidavit said.

Police identified the suspect through video surveillance footage, the affidavit said. He has prior convictions for third-degree theft, drug possession, fourth-degree assault, malicious mischief and taking a motor vehicle without possession.

At Wednesday’s hearing, Reukauf set bail at $100,000 after prosecutors noted the suspect’s prior criminal history, as well as having 23 bench warrants issued for him.

Taylor’s death was the 28th homicide in Yakima County this year, and the eighth in the city.

Reach Donald W. Meyers at or on Twitter: donaldwmeyers, or

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