Neighbor testifies during inquest into teen's fatal shooting by deputies

Mi'Chance Dunlap-Gittens

KENT, Wash. — Testimony continues for a second day in the inquest into the shooting death of a Des Moines teenager by three King County sheriff's deputies.

Calvin Barnes lived very close to where the fatal shooting happened in Des Moines in January.

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Related: King County inquest opens in deadly shooting of Des Moines teen

He was questioned first by the King County deputy prosecutor.

“When you heard the gunshots, how many did you hear?” asked the deputy prosecutor.

“Like five or six. Like 'pop, pop, pop, pop,'” said Barnes.

Barnes described the sounds he heard late on January 27.  He told a King County courtroom he was holding his infant daughter, dozing off on the couch, when he awoke to his stepson reacting to the sound of gunfire.

The lawyer for the victim's family asked if he heard anything else.

“You didn’t hear anyone announce, ‘police?’”

Barnes: “No.”

“No one announced ‘sheriff?’”

Barnes: “No.”

“’Get down?’”

Barnes: “No.”

Barnes says he saw 17-year-old Mi'Chance Dunlap-Gittens lying on the ground, mortally wounded.

Several undercover King county sheriff's deputies were trying to arrest Dunlap-Gittens’ 16-year-old friend, who was suspected in a murder that had happened about 35 miles away in a Sammamish park.

Dunlap-Gittens was not a suspect.

“How can trained officers mess up so bad? How did this come about? Who was in charge? Who set this up? Who thought this was a good idea?” said Alexis Dunlap, the victim’s mother.

The inquest is meant to help answer questions like those his parents say they have. The jurors will not reach a verdict, but instead will make findings in the case.

Dunlap-Gittens’ father says no matter what the jury decides, this won't be the end of it for his son.

“We’re not going to stop. So, if we need to go further, we will. And it’s not going to bring chance back, but maybe it will help some other teenager in the future – another family or whatever,” said Frank Gittens.

The teenager the deputies were actually looking for that night is set to testify Tuesday afternoon, but his mother has told prosecutors she doesn't want him to take the stand.

The King County Sheriff's Office said when the shooting of Dunlap-Gittens happened, both teenagers were armed, and one of them opened fire.