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Drug Dealer who Shot Man inside his house in Tacoma for Unpaid Debt Sentenced

Drug Dealer who Shot Man inside his house in Tacoma for Unpaid Debt Sentenced

Tacoma, WA: A drug dealer was sentenced for fatally shooting a man inside his Tacoma home for not paying what he owed.

Antione Lavar Larkins, 36, admitted to first-degree manslaughter in the death of Earl Harris III, 53, on Jan. 17, 2022. He received a 20-year, five-month prison sentence in Pierce County Superior Court on Friday.

That evening, Harris was spending time with friends at his residence on South Sheridan Avenue. Larkins arrived at the door around 5:40 p.m. and assaulted Harris, according to court records.

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According to one witness, Larkins struck the victim in the head after being let into the house. According to documents, the defendant was seen reaching into his waistband area with his right hand and producing a handgun.

Larkins forcefully shoved Harris against a wall and fired several shots at him. When Harris’ friends noticed Larkins had a weapon, they quickly fled. In 2022, Larkins informed the police that he and Harris struggled for the weapon, resulting in him admitting to the shooting, as stated by prosecutors.

Larkins admitted to causing Harris’s death during a struggle over a gun, as stated in the defendant’s plea statement on Feb. 5.

Harris contacted emergency services for assistance and was transported to Tacoma General Hospital, where he passed away. Larkins was pinpointed as a suspect thanks to surveillance footage and tips from the public. Larkins originally informed the police that he had not seen Harris since 2019. He confessed to visiting Harris’ home on the night of the shooting. Larkins alleged that Harris assaulted him immediately upon entering the room, but witnesses contradicted that account, according to prosecutors.

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Harris’ acquaintances mentioned that he frequently obtained substances from Larkins and had a reputation for not settling his debts, according to prosecutors.

Following his passing, Harris was believed to be making progress in overcoming his opioid addiction, as stated by his cousin in a court statement on Feb. 12.

Larkins has been convicted of serious crimes such as second-degree assault, unlawful delivery of a controlled substance, and residential burglary.

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