A 14-year-old male fatally shot his 17-year-old sister at their family’s home in Oakland, CA. Police say the shooting occurred during an argument over laundry, while the killer’s attorney says it was an accident. The shooter pled guilty to voluntary manslaughter and was sentenced to up to 10 years in a juvenile detention facility.
| Wednesday, Jan 29, 2014 |
A 14-year-old boy suspected of killing his 17-year-old sister has turned himself in, attorney John Burris confirmed Wednesday afternoon. Burris’ firm is representing the family involved in this case.
At 2:15 p.m., Mario Toliver Jr. turned himself in at the Oakland Police Department. He was accompanied by his family and attorney Adante Pointer, who works with Burris.
“He is not a hardened criminal,” Burris said, adding that he had been talking to the boy for days trying to get him to surrender.
Burris also said the teen is scared, remorseful and emotional.
The teen had been wanted by police on suspicion of shooting and killing his sister, Justice Toliver, on Thursday.
Several media outlets had reported that the dispute leading up to the killing was because Mario was mad at his sister for bleaching his clothes. There was indeed a fight before Justice — the mother of a 2-year-old daughter — was found dead.
Burris on Wednesday said the shooting was not over laundry.
Greg Stewart, a cousin, told NBC Bay Area on Friday the brother and sister were both dealing with difficult situations and while they fought like siblings do, they still “loved each other.”
Stewart, who lives two floors up from Justice and Mario, said both teens were stressed. Mario also has a baby, who is about six or seven months old, Stewart said.
The family has set up a donation webpage to raise money for funeral costs. The goal is $10,000.
NBC Bay Area’s Jodi Hernandez, Lisa Fernandez and Jean Elle contributed to this story.
OAKLAND — A 14-year-old Oakland boy accused of fatally shooting his 17-year-old sister has a history of threatening behavior, a prosecutor said at the boy’s first court appearance Monday.
Mario Toliver Jr., is charged in juvenile court with murder with personal use of a gun and three gun possession counts in connection with the Jan. 23 slaying of his sister Justice Toliver, the mother of a toddler.
Authorities say the boy, father of an infant himself, shot Justice once in the chest during some kind of argument at their home in the 800 block of Franklin Street and then fled, only to turn himself into police six days later.
The boy appeared at [a] detention hearing before Commissioner Mark Kliszewski on Monday, when defense attorney Adante Pointer requested that he be released into his family’s custody.
Deputy district attorney Angela Backers said that although the boy has no criminal record, his school records from the last three years show a history of violence, including an assault on a female student.
On another occasion, he allegedly threatened a female teacher.
“He said she needed to have a bullet put in her,” Backers said.
The boy also once went to another boy’s house to beat him up and told that child’s father, “I’m gonna pop his bitch (expletive),” Backers said.
Pointer said the boy has never had any contact with police before his arrest and that incidents alleged in his school records come from one-sided reports that were never investigated or verified.
The attorney would not comment on the facts of the case other than to say, “It’s not murder.”
Kliszewski said that it’s still unclear why the boy had a gun or where he got it. He ordered that the boy remain in juvenile hall, but said that he would be allowed to attend his sister’s funeral with a probation officer in tow.
Nearly a dozen of the boy’s family members attended the hearing. They declined to comment on the case.
By MALAIKA FRALEY | Bay Area News GroupNovember 5, 2014 at 6:10 a.m.
OAKLAND — A 15-year-old Oakland boy was sentenced this week to up to 10 years in a youth correctional facility for fatally shooting his 17-year-old sister, the boy’s attorney said Wednesday.
Mario Toliver Jr. was 14 when he fatally shot Justice Toliver on Jan. 23 at their family home in Oakland’s Chinatown neighborhood. A shooting initially described by police as having occurred during an argument over laundry, the boy’s attorney says the facts sussed out during the juvenile prosecution pointed to an accidental shooting.
“We realized this case was not a coldblooded murder and not something that happened over something as nonsensical as bleached clothes or laundry,” defense attorney Adante Pointer said. “Instead this was a tragic accident.”
The boy did not have a trial but instead admitted in Alameda County juvenile court that he committed voluntary manslaughter, Pointer said. He was sentenced on Monday to up to 10 years in a California Division of Juvenile Justice facility in the Stockton area.
There, he will [receive] therapy and, if he does well, he could be released back to his family in as little as two years.
“His release date is based upon the progress that he makes towards addressing the underlying issues that brought about these unfortunate circumstances,” Pointer said.
The boy had no criminal record before he was charged in the juvenile court with murder with use of a gun and three gun possession counts. He had recently become a father when the shooting occurred, and Justice Toliver had been mother to a toddler.
Mario Toliver fled the home after the shooting and then turned himself into police six days later.
“He expressed remorse from the beginning to his family and the court regarding the incident and received the full support of his family from the beginning to the end,” Pointer said.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office declined to comment on the case, citing [confidentiality] laws surrounding juvenile defendants.