Kelso 13-year-old charged with manslaughter appears in juvenile court

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The 13-year-old boy from Kelso who is now charged with manslaughter in the shooting death of his 13-year-old friend made his first appearance in juvenile court Tuesday.

Dawson Dunn was just arrested Monday in connection with the October shooting. FOX 12 is identifying Dunn because he’s facing a Measure 11-equivalent crime.

According to investigators, Dunn called 911 on Oct. 14 to report that he had just shot his friend while playing with a shotgun. He told deputies it was an accident and he didn’t know the gun was loaded.

At the scene, 13-year-old Edgar Vasquez was found dead.

Deputies say the two boys were friends, and Vasquez had been spending the night at Dunn’s home in the Kelso area.

According to court records in the case, Dunn said Vasquez was chasing him around the house when he grabbed the shotgun from the master bedroom. He “racked the shotgun and was surprised a bullet was in there… he racked the gun again and looked and thought there was no bullet in the gun."

Dunn told investigators he was “messing around” when he pointed the gun at his friend and pulled the trigger.

No adults were home at the time.

Court records show the only other person at the house was Dunn’s 12-year-old cousin. She did not witness the shooting, but heard the boys playing, then heard a sound like a balloon popping and Dunn “screaming for her to call 911.”

When she asked why, according to court documents, he replied, “I shot Edgar!”

Ever since the shooting, the Cowlitz County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has been reviewing the case. It is ultimately their decision whether to file charges. Prosecuting Attorney Ryan Jurvakainen did not return FOX 12’s calls for comment Tuesday.

Reached by phone Tuesday, both the Dunn and Vasquez families declined comment.

Dunn is being held in the Cowlitz County Juvenile Detention Center on $30,000 bail.

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