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March 1, 2021

Police identify Salt Lake area teen killed in weekend shooting

KEARNS — Police have identified a teen boy shot and killed in a Kearns home over the weekend.

Roman Karpunin was shot in the upper torso at 5155 S. Alex St. just after 1 a.m. on Saturday. Police originally reported the boy was 15 but now say he was 16.

Kaden Nathan Christiansen, 18, was arrested and booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of manslaughter. According to jail records, he was released from jail to pre-trial services about eight hours after arriving.

Christiansen told police he accidentally shot Karpunin while “mimicking being a police officer and arresting (him),” according to a police affidavit. “Kaden reported he believed the firearm was on safety and thought the firearm was unloaded because he had taken the magazine out.”

The shooting happened at the home where Christiansen lives with his girlfriend and their young son, according to police.

A search warrant was served on Christiansen’s home by investigators and “evidence related to the crime” was collected, according to Unified police. Christiansen told officers he had smoked marijuana prior to the incident, according to police.

Christiansen’s Facebook page includes several pictures of him posing with rifles and other long guns.

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