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Teen, angered by horseplay, shot teen in head

An Onawa boy is charged with first-degree murder

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A 17-year-old Onawa boy was angry at another boy for repeatedly pointing an unloaded shotgun at others and pulling the trigger, so he grabbed a loaded shotgun and shot the boy in the head, according to court records.

Jay Lee Neubaum is charged with first-degree murder for the Jan. 31 shooting in adult district court because of the severity of the crime.

Those who are convicted of the charge are sentenced to life in prison, but because Neubaum is a juvenile he can be paroled.

Neubaum was working on a demolition derby car in his grandmother’s garage in Mapleton with three other boys that night when two of them, including Joseph Hopkins, 16, began playing with an unloaded 20-gauge shotgun, court records show.

“The playing consisted of mock fighting, pointing it at others, pulling the trigger to ‘dry-fire’ it and cycling the action,” according to a criminal complaint. “Jay Lee told (Hopkins and the other boy) to stop messing around with the gun several times. When they didn’t listen, Jay Lee became angry.”

Neubaum allegedly retrieved a 12-gauge shotgun from inside the derby car and shot Hopkins in the head with a slug as Hopkins was kneeling near the car about 9:40 p.m.

Neubaum was arrested Friday and is being held at a juvenile detention center in Woodbury County. His bail is set at $1 million.

Mapleton is about 50 miles west of Carroll.

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