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Man charged in fatal St. Paul shooting

Man charged in fatal St. Paul shooting Photo: Ramsey County Sheriff's Office

March 18, 2019 01:00 PM

The Ramsey County Attorney's Office says a 19-year-old man has now been charged with one count of second-degree murder in connection to the fatal shooting of a 21-year-old early Friday morning in St. Paul.

Court records show Theotis Antonio Thomas of St. Paul was charged Monday. He had turned himself in at St. Paul police headquarters late Friday night and had been booked into the Ramsey County Jail.

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Police have identified the victim as 21-year-old Mark Franklin Jr.

According to the criminal complaint, officers were dispatched to the 600 block of Elfelt Street just before 4 a.m. Friday. There, they spoke to several witnesses.

RELATED: St. Paul police investigate fatal shooting

A 17-year-old allegedly told police that Thomas had gotten into an argument with a woman, the argument had escalated and he had reportedly put his hands around her neck. Franklin was reported to have intervened, angering Thomas who allegedly left the house and threatened to return with a gun.

Around 15 to 20 minutes later, the 17-year-old reported hearing a loud knock at the door. The woman allegedly let Thomas back in and the 17-year-old reported hearing a commotion. Though the woman attempted to stop him, the teen reported seeing Thomas pull the trigger and shoot Franklin in his left eye.

The woman also reported that Thomas had shot Franklin in the face, then run from the room.

Officers reportedly recovered two shell casings from a bedroom and saw what appeared to be a bullet hole in the bedroom wall. 

According to the complaint, police later located a 2005 Chevrolet Equinox parked not far from the home of Thomas' parents. In the car, a Ruger .380 caliber handgun in a black and white sock was allegedly discovered under the driver's seat. The gun's magazine holds six rounds, though two were missing.

One of the shell casings recovered at the scene reportedly matched the brand and type of ammunition found in the magazine.

The complaint states Thomas told authorities he knew police were looking for him, but claimed he did not know why. He allegedly said "he was too drunk and stoned" to recall the events of that night and eventually asked for a lawyer.

The complaint goes on to say Thomas has a juvenile adjudication for second-degree assault that makes him ineligible to possess firearms or ammunition.

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Frank Rajkowski

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