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Teen suspect in fatal shooting of former Chaparral football player to be tried as an adult

A day after 17-year-old Richard Newsome surrendered to police to face a murder charge in the fatal shooting of Richard Nelson, police said Newsome has been certified as an adult and will be prosecuted in the adult justice system.

Newsome was initially booked Tuesday into Clark County Juvenile Hall on one count of murder with a deadly weapon. On Wednesday, Metropolitan Police Department spokeswoman Laura Meltzer said he was being booked into the Clark County Detention Center, where adults awaiting prosecution are held.

The teen murder suspect’s mother, Tianna Thomas, 37, also surrendered to police Tuesday. She was wanted on an accessory charge in the case because she was at the scene of Nelson’s fatal shooting and reportedly drove her son, Newsome, away from the scene.

Thomas was charged with one count of harboring, concealing or aiding a felony offender and booked into the Clark County Detention Center with a bail of $5,000. Jail records show that Thomas was released Wednesday.

Nelson, 18, was fatally shot about 7:35 p.m. after intervening in a fight between his sister and several other people outside a home on the 4800 block of Sacks Drive, near Nellis Boulevard and Tropicana Avenue.

Family members told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that Nelson, a former Chaparral High School football player, wasn’t the kind of person to seek trouble but that in the moment, he was determined to protect his older sister.

“He was just shielding me from them,” Nelson’s sister, Oniesha Coleman, said Tuesday. “He was just trying to stop them from hurting me, and he was trying to make sure I was safe — that the rest of us were safe. The coward shot him in his chest, and as he ran he shot him in his back.”

The Missouri State University freshman and football player was rushed to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The investigation continues, and anyone with information about Nelson’s death may contact Metro’s homicide unit at 702-828-3521 or at homicide@lvmpd.com.

Contact Rachel Crosby at rcrosby@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5290. Follow @rachelacrosby on Twitter.

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