ROSWELL, N.M. (KRQE) – The Roswell Police Department reports that on Thursday, July 16, a 16-year-old teen turned himself in and has been charged with the involuntary manslaughter of his adult cousin. RPD states that an investigation determined the teen, Ethan Benitez, accidentally shot his cousin in a southwest Roswell apartment on July 8.
Police say investigators believe that Benitez as under the influence of marijuana as he allegedly handled a handgun and it accidentally fired. A single gunshot struck 22-year-old Omar Benitez in the left wrist and chest.
Authorities report there were two other individuals in the apartment and one of them witnessed the shooting when it took place around 10 p.m. Police and medics were called to the apartment and Omar Benitez was transported to a hospital where he died about two hours later according to police.
On Wednesday, July 15, a warrant was obtained for Ethan Benitez that charged the teen with involuntary manslaughter and unlawful possession of a handgun. He turned himself in to the Roswell Police Department around 3 p.m. on Thursday.