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Grand Ridge man charged with murder following park shooting

Grand Ridge man charged with murder following park shooting

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Grand Ridge man Steven Alexander Mantecon, 20, has been charged with an open count of murder in the shooting death of 19-year-old Blake Cain, according to a press release from the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.

As of Monday, he was being held without bond in the Jackson County jail.

Authorities say the shooting occurred in Thomas Porter Park, located at 6934 Florida Street in Grand Ridge.

Witnesses told investigators the two men had argued earlier in the day and that they’d agreed to meet in the park to fight. News of the fight "went viral," according to the affidavit associated with Mantecon's arrest, and a crowd of adults and juveniles showed up to watch. 

When they met at the park a verbal altercation again ensued, which led to Mantecon leaving Porter Park, officials said.

But 10 to 15 minutes later, authorities report, Mantecon returned to the park, armed with a semi-automatic rifle.

“Witnesses stated that Mantecon opened fire into the crowd, striking Cain,” the release states. Mantecon also struck three vehicles, one of which was occupied at the time, authorities said.

No other injuries were noted by the witnesses.

A short time later, Mantecon was found at his residence on Shady Grove Road in Grand Ridge. Officials say he was then taken into custody without incident and transported to Jackson County Correctional Facility to await first appearance.

Mantecon has been charged with an open count of murder. More charges are pending, officials said in the release.

According to the affidavit, one point of contention involved a piece of jewelry that Cain had given one of Mantecon's relatives and which he had been trying to retrieve.

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