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Salt Lake City police seeking suspect in shooting death of teen

Witnesses say fleeing shooter was almost hit by a car on Redwood Road early Saturday.

First Published Apr 13 2013 09:00 am • Last Updated Apr 26 2013 08:16 pm

A West Valley City teenager was shot to death early Saturday in Salt Lake City, according to police.

The shooter was still at large Saturday night.

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The Salt Lake Police Department identified the victim as 19-year-old Sione Fakatoufifita. Police responded to a shots-fired call at 1680 S. Redwood Road about 1:15 a.m. When they arrived, they found Fakatoufifita’s body in the north parking lot of the Maverik convenience store.

Lt. Carl Merino said that witnesses reported multiple shots being fired but that Fakatoufifita was hit once. So far, it is unclear what sparked the shooting or whether anyone else was with Fakatoufifita. Police believe that the shooter was alone.

Police say that witnesses saw the assailant ran northeast across Redwood Road and was almost hit by a car. Detectives would like to speak to the driver of that vehicle.

The suspect is described as a Polynesian man wearing a black hoodie over a white T-shirt and dark jeans.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Salt Lake City Police at 801-799-3000. Anonymous tips also can be left via text message by sending "TIPSLCPD" plus information to CRIMES (274637). Reference case number 13-55427.

Fakatoufifita was scheduled to appear in 3rd District Court next week on misdemeanor charges of failing to stop at the command of a police officer and consumption of alcohol by a minor.

According to court records, West Valley City police arrested Fakatoufifita after responding to 4020 W. 4100 South on a report of a gun being fired. Fakatoufifita fled on foot but was apprehended by police, who detected alcohol on his breath and confirmed he had consumed alcohol with a breath test, according to court records.

The charges were filed in November, but Fakatoufifita failed to appear for a December arraignment. He was arrested April 1 on a $5,000 warrant, as well as a new alcohol-related charge, but was granted supervised release from jail.

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At the time of his death, Fakatoufifita was on probation for yet another alcohol-related misdemeanor, as well as a conviction for shoplifting.

kbennion@sltrib.com Twitter: @KimballBennion

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