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Oakland teen allegedly fatally shot sister over bleached laundry

Crime, Law and JusticeCrimeHomicideShootingsLaw Enforcement

A 14-year-old Oakland boy suspected of fatally shooting his older sister and then going into hiding has turned himself in to police.

Mario Tolliver Jr. has been wanted by Oakland police since last Thursday on suspicion of shooting and killing 17-year-old Justice Tolliver at the apartment where they lived with their grandmother.

Family members told local media that the shooting occurred during a fight over the girl bleaching her brother's laundry. His attorneys confirmed that a fight occurred but denied it was over laundry.

The shooting left the girl's 3-year-old daughter without a mother and the family stunned. In the days that ensued, the suspect's family made public appeals for him to call and turn himself in.

Tolliver family attorney Adante Pointer, who accompanied the suspect and his family to the police station Wednesday afternoon, described the boy as distraught.

"As you can imagine, [he was] very emotional," Pointer told KTVU. "You know, you're having to say your last goodbyes, if you will. Which is obviously something that his sister did not get a chance to do."

Mario is also the father of an infant, family members told reporters.

During a brief news conference Wednesday, Oakland police Sgt. Mike Gantt said Mario was under suspicion of killing his sister "based on information we obtained while investigating the case," but declined to elaborate.

The shooting occurred in the family's fifth-floor apartment in the 800 block of Franklin Street in Oakland's Chinatown district about 12:15 p.m. Jan. 23. Justice died at the scene, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

A friend of the siblings' mother told the paper Justice was "just your typical kid," describing her as "a beautiful kid, a beautiful young lady." 

Now, prosecutors must decide whether to charge her 14-year-old brother as an adult in her homicide case.

In an interview with KTVU, Pointer, the family's attorney, said he hoped the district attorney's office would take "the complete picture into consideration as it relates to who he is, what took place, and that everyone has redemption in them."

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jason.wells@latimes.com

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