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Posted: 8:35 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017

Trial underway for teen accused of killing friend, sending photo over Snapchat

By Natalie Dreier

Cox Media Group National Content Desk

WESTMORELAND COUNTY, Pa. —

A trial is underway for the teenager accused of killing his friend and then sharing a selfie picture over social media.  

Maxwell Morton, of Jeannette, is accused of killing 16-year-old Ryan Mangan on Feb. 4, 2014.

Police said Morton sent a photo to a friend in Wisconsin via Snapchat, after Morton told him he shot someone and “got a body.”

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The picture is time-stamped 5:14. In opening arguments Tuesday, Mangan’s mother testified she found her son approximately 26 minutes later. Mangan had been shot in the face.

While prosecutors argue this is a first-degree murder case, the defense is setting up an involuntary manslaughter argument as the case centers around that photo.

Two days after Mangan’s death, a phone call from Wisconsin led police to Morton’s house. County detectives testified Tuesday that Morton initially said the shooting had been an accident and told them he had just been trying to take a picture down the barrel of the gun.

The interview ended abruptly after police said Morton told them he pulled the trigger, shot Mangan and said, “I didn’t really care either.”

Morton’s defense team said there’s a reason he said that, and they plan to have Morton tell the jury when he testifies in court.