An 18-year-old man was charged with first-degree murder and armed kidnapping after police said he shot his 16-year-old ex-girlfriend to death Saturday.
Roderick Bernard Lewis of 829 18th Ave. S turned himself in about 11:30 a.m. Sunday after police hunted him all night.
As detectives took him to jail Sunday afternoon, he told reporters he shot Shinequa LaTesha Walker but said it was an accident.
"I didn't do it on purpose," he said. "We was tussling, and the gun went off. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to do it."
Police said he waited for Walker near her uncle and aunt's house at 2700 Ninth St. S, where she moved about a week ago to get away from Lewis.
When she and her friend Lisa Lambert, 16, arrived about 8 p.m., Lewis argued with Walker, struggled with her and then shot her once in the chest, said Detective Steve Aspinall. She died at Bayfront Medical Center.
Then Lewis threatened Lambert with the gun and forced her to drive him about 30 blocks, to the intersection of 37th Street and 17th Avenue S, Aspinall said.
Lewis was upset over the couple's recent breakup, so Walker had moved to the M.L. King (Ninth) Street house from her mother's Fourth Street S house, according to Aspinall. The couple had been seeing each other about a year.
"It was an abusive relationship," Aspinall said. "They were fighting. He wanted to get back together, and she wanted to stay away from him."
Lewis has faced six previous felony charges including battery on a law enforcement officer and drug charges, Aspinall said. He was not attending school.
Darryl Page, 45, lives near Georgia and Calvin Lemon, Walker's aunt and uncle. He bemoaned the number of guns on the street.
"It's sad to see a young life taken like that," Page said. "And having it happen right on your street makes you wonder how safe our world is. Everybody's got guns. We have to get rid of the guns."
The Lemons declined to talk to reporters.
Martin Shapiro, assistant principal of curriculum at Lakewood High, said Walker was a pleasant person and a promising student who did especially well in her business courses.
"She had a lot to look forward to," he said.