BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A Biloxi teen will spend the next 17 years in prison for shooting and killing his step-sister in 2012. Sadie Warden was just 13 at the time of her death.
Jonathan Morales, 19, was sentenced to the maximum sentence under Mississippi law for manslaughter: 20 years. Judge Lisa Dodson suspended three of those years. He was also ordered to pay a fine and pay for funeral expenses.
Morales was the one who called police the day of the shooting. He told the 911 operator his sister had been hit by a drive-by shooter. But when police arrived, the story didn't add up.
Assistant District Attorney Scott Lusk said the evidence showed Morales shot the victim in the shoulder from behind as she sat on her bedroom floor. Morales told investigators he got the shotgun from his parent's bedroom, and was just trying to scare his sister.
Lusk said testimony would show Morales dragged Sadie's body outside the home to make it appear as if someone else shot her.
During Monday's sentencing hearing, Judge Dodson heard testimony from family members and also from the defendant. Once released, Morales will be placed on probation for three years.