A 16-year-old Minnesota high school football player took a gun out of his bag to show a pair of friends while at the house of Da’Qwan Jones-Morris, 17, on Wednesday.
He unloaded it before handing it to a 15-year-old, according to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press. The younger teammate pulled the trigger and pointed it around before handing it back to the 16-year-old.
The three had gone to Jones-Morris’ house and were playing video games. The 16-year-old had stolen the gun out of an SUV at the high school on October 31, according to the Star Tribune. He reloaded it and handed it back to the 15-year-old, telling him to put it back in the bag.
The gun went off. Jones-Morris was struck and killed.
The 15-year-old, who was not named in the report, told police he had turned away to get a cigar and hadn’t seen the weapon being reloaded, according to the Pioneer Press.
The 16-year-old was charged with second-degree manslaughter/culpable negligence, according to the Star Tribune. The outlet reported the 15-year-old faces “similar charges,” though because of his age, details of the case were not released.
Jones-Morris was a co-captain of the Sibley football team and played on the basketball team.
The school mourned him Thursday. Sibley offered grief counselors to students, and many wore red, Jones-Morris’ favorite color, to honor him, according to WCCO4.
His mother, Monica Jones, wrote that “Da’Qwan was known for his love of music, technology, sports, and a favorite babysitter for many children. His sweet smile could light up a room,” according to the Pioneer Press.
Boys basketball coach John Carrier told the Pioneer Press that Jones-Morris brightened the people around him.
“He had an infectious personality, which pulled in everyone around him,” Carrier said. “He also had a great sense of humor and could brighten any situation. Most of all, he was an amazing teammate who was always there to pull others up. His loss will leave a void in our school and the lives of those who knew him.”
Jones is accepted donations for the funeral and other cost at the PayPal account DaQwanForever.