Dance video

Colorado teenager shot and killed while filming TikTok dance video

DENVER– Two minors and an adult are facing charges after a Colorado teenager was shot in the head and killed while filming a video for popular social media platform TikTok earlier this month.

Three minors were filming dance videos for posting on TikTok in the southern Colorado town of Monte Vista when a Glock 19 pistol discharged on August 7, according to an arrest warrant affidavit obtained by KRDO- TV.

The identity of the victim has not been released.

Emiliano Vargas, 21, was arrested for allegedly permitting or supplying a minor with a firearm.

The other two minors who were at the scene were arrested for manslaughter and possession of a handgun by minors, according to a statement from the Monte Vista Police Department.

According to the affidavit, one of the minors told police she saw the other minor point and shoot at the victim before throwing the gun on a nearby bed.

When asked if it looked like an accident, the girl told police: “It could be a (an) accident.”

Vargas told police he was not at the scene when the shot was fired, according to the affidavit.

The weapon had remained unlocked and visible on a shelf in the home, according to the police document, and police found photos of minors holding the weapon in May earlier this year.

Vargas’ attorney, Peter Rachesky, did not immediately respond to comments on Tuesday.

Police watched a TikTok video recorded just before the shooting in which the victim dances while someone in the background “plays with something”, according to the affidavit.

Investigators also determined that the nature of the gunshot wound made it unlikely that the accidentally shot victim had fired, the document says.

Irene Arellano, public information officer for the Monte Vista Police Department, declined to comment on the case, citing a judge’s order limiting pretrial press exposure.

The case is being prosecuted by the Colorado Attorney General’s office. Lawrence Pacheco, the bureau’s spokesman, also said he could not comment.

———

Jesse Bedayn is a member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places reporters in local newsrooms to report on underreported issues. Follow Bedayn on Twitter.