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JOHNSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — The death of a Johnston teenager last year has been ruled a homicide, according to authorities.
Dillon Vienes, 16, was shot and killed while hanging out with friends in a Cedar Street home in February 2022.
The circumstances leading up to his death have not been made public, though Johnston Police Chief Mark Vieira said Friday that two people have been arrested and charged.
Officers arrested a juvenile Thursday and charged him with manslaughter, using a firearm while committing a crime of violence, possession of ammunition by a minor, and two counts of possession of a firearm by a minor.
Vieira said the gun used to kill Vienes was legally owned by 30-year-old Mario Kirios, who has already been charged with five counts of improperly storing a firearm. Kirios was arrested again Friday and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
The shooting was originally deemed accidental, but the investigators have since decided otherwise through a lengthy investigation.
“The Johnston Police Department offers our deepest condolences to Dillon’s family and friends,” Vieira said in a news release. “The death of a child is a parent’s ultimate tragedy.”
“Although the filing of these criminal charges won’t bring Dillon back, hopefully it brings a sense of justice to the family,” he continued. “This tragedy underscores the importance for owners of firearms to properly secure them to prevent shooting deaths such as these involving juveniles.”
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