08:57 GMT25 February 2021
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    An Ohio man is accused of unintentionally shooting and killing a friend at a dinner party while streaming the event on Facebook Live.

    Steven Leannais, 30, appeared in a Cleveland courtroom Monday on charges of third-degree felony involuntary manslaughter in the death of Anthony Stanford II, 27.

    The two men were at a dinner party at Leannais’ home on Thursday evening, when another guest in attendance went into his bedroom and grabbed the defendant's handgun. In the video, the man is seen waving the gun around before being warned that it is loaded. A female partygoer is heard saying, “don’t point that at me.”

    At this point, the man points the gun at his face and Leannais moves in and takes it from him. He then removed the magazine and returned it to the man. 

    "There you go," Leannais says. "Now it's not loaded." 

    The man then puts the gun in his mouth and says jokingly, "I'm going to do it, I swear to God." 

    He then presciently says, "The last thing they say is always, 'I didn't know it was loaded.'"

    Leannais then holds the bullets up to a camera live-streaming to Facebook and tells viewers that is why he removed the magazine. He says, "See that? That would have made a bloody mess. See that hollow point right there?"

    The video ends shortly after Stanford enters the room.

    Cleveland.com reports that “Leannais eventually picked the gun up, lowered it to his side pulled the trigger, unaware a bullet was in the chamber, according to police reports and court records.”

    Stanford was shot in the upper abdomen and reportedly ran out the door. Leannais ran after him and called 9-1-1, who sent an ambulance. The victim was transported to the local hospital, but was pronounced dead approximately an hour later.

    Leannais’ defense attorney Leif Christman told the court that the defendant is "extremely sorry for what happened and extends his condolences to Anthony's mother, Mrs. (Trina) Ford."

    "If there was any way to trade places, he'd gladly do it," Christman added.

    "It's so tragic," Christman said. "His friend is deceased. He hasn't eaten or slept since it happened. He needs to get counseling."

    Bail was set at $10,000 for Leannais, who has no prior felony convictions. He also agreed to the prosecutor’s request that he relinquish any guns in his possession and surrender his concealed-carry license. He has also been ordered not to have any contact with friends who witnessed the shooting.



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    Livestream, Shooting, Facebook, Anthony Stanford II, Steven Leannais, Ohio, Cleveland
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