WEST PALM BEACH - A 25-year-old Lake Worth Beach man died Sunday evening after a friend shot him, mistakenly believing that a handgun was unloaded, West Palm Beach police reported Monday.
Investigators say the shooting occurred shortly after 7 p.m. on the 4200 block of San Marino Boulevard at the Emerald Isle apartments along Military Trail.
Police did not disclose the name of the man who died, citing a 2018 state constitutional amendment modeled after California's Marsy's Law. The amendment allows crime victims or the families to request their names be withheld from public reports.
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According to a police statement, four men and two women were in the living room of a second-story, one-bedroom apartment when the shooting occurred.
Witnesses said another 25-year-old man admitted to loading a handgun and charging the weapon, but forgot it was loaded and thought he was "dry-firing" when the gun discharged and struck his friend.
The shooting victim walked out of the apartment and down the stairs before collapsing. No charges had been filed as of midday Monday, but the investigation remains open, police said.
The fatal shooting is the 62nd homicide reported in Palm Beach County this year and 15th in West Palm Beach, including two cases city police describe as acts of self-defense.
The Palm Beach County Medical Examiner's Office describes a homicide as a death caused at the hands of another person, including acts that may be considered self-defense.