A Blue Springs man has been charged in the shooting death of a 19-year-old at a McDonald’s Monday evening, officials said.

Prosecutors charged Joseph Mayes, 20, with first degree involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action in the death of 19-year-old Harry Bowers, of Lee’s Summit, according to the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office.

The Blue Springs Police Department responded to the McDonald’s on Highway 7 about 7:15 p.m. Monday on a shots fired call. Bowers was suffering from gunshot wounds. First responders attempted life-saving measures, but Bowers died at a hospital, according to court documents.

A manager at the McDonald’s told officers she is “good friends” with Bowers. She, her boyfriend, Bowers and Mayes were hanging out that evening. She was outside when Mayes ran out of the McDonald’s, saying he “accidentally shot” Bowers, before Mayes ran away, according to court documents.

In his interview, Mayes told police that he was at the urinal when Bowers, standing behind Mayes, placed his gun to Mayes’ stomach and “pulled the trigger to hear it click.” Then, Mayes pulled out his gun, pointed it at Bowers and allegedly pulled the trigger, according to court documents. He said he didn’t know a round was in the gun.

It was a “game” the two often played, according to the prosecutor’s office.

Mayes later arrived at his uncle’s house, who convinced him to turn himself in.

When the detective told Mayes about his friend’s death, Mayes began crying, according to court documents.

Two others were also arrested.

Gun violence will be the subject of a new, statewide journalism project The Star is undertaking in Missouri this year in partnership with the national service program Report for America and sponsored in part by Missouri Foundation for Health. As part of this project, The Star will seek the community’s help.

To contribute, visit Report for America online at reportforamerica.org.

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Cortlynn Stark covers breaking news as well as race and class issues for The Star. Cortlynn studied journalism and Spanish at Missouri State University.

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