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Man charged with illegal firearm possession in Kansas City Zoo shooting

Zoo shooting scene
Posted at 10:10 AM, Aug 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-13 15:50:45-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo — One Kansas City man was charged with illegally possessing a firearm in a Sunday shooting that left another man dead at the Kansas City Zoo, according to the United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Missouri.

Jason T. Smith died in the shooting.

Anthony R. Meneses, 27, was in Smith’s car when he reached into the back pocket of the driver’s seat for a Glock 9mm pistol.

Meneses accidentally fired the gun, which shot Smith in the chest through the back of the car seat.

Smith was taken to an area hospital where he later died.

It is illegal for felons to possess firearms, and Meneses had a prior felony conviction for tampering with a motor vehicle. He was arrested Thursday and will appear in court later in the afternoon.

The attorney's office said the arrest came as part of Operation LeGend, the federal task force created to address violent crime.

Editor's Note: The United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Missouri initially stated Meneses was Smith's cousin. The office issued a statement later Thursday saying the two were not related.

For jurisdictions that utilize the Greater Kansas City Crime Stoppers Tips Hotline, anonymous tips can be made by calling 816-474-TIPS (8477), submitting the tip online or through the free mobile app at P3Tips.com.

Annual homicide details and data for the Kansas City area are available through the 41 Action News Homicide Tracker, which was launched in 2015.