Suspect admits to shooting man to death after fist fight at 331 Inn in Mishawaka early Friday morning

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By: Krystal Vivian kvivian@953mnc.com

A 64-year-old man was charged with reckless homicide, a level 5 felony, after he admitted to police that he shot a man to death at the 331 Inn in Mishawaka early Friday morning, Sept. 4.

Richard Bonnett is being held at the St. Joseph County Jail on $30,000 corporate surety or $3,000 cash bond in connection to the shooting death of 46-year-old Roberto Teneria, according to a news release from the St. Joseph County Prosecutor’s Office.

Bonnett told police that he shot Teneria after the two were involved in a fistfight at the 331 Inn shortly after 3 a.m. Friday, according to court documents. Bonnett and Teneria were the only patrons in the building and Bonnett said he asked Teneria to leave in an effort to help the bartender clear the bar. 

When Teneria refused to leave, Bonnett punched him, according to court documents. The men rolled around on the floor punching each other. The female bartender told police that she was trying to break up the fight.

At some point, the fistfight ended and the bartender told police that she and Teneria began moving toward the door. Then Teneria turned to Bonnett and said that Bonnett also had to leave, according to court documents. Bonnett pulled out a gun while announcing that he had a gun.

Bonnett shot Teneria and told police that he felt threatened because Teneria was approaching him again, but told police he knew that Teneria was not armed and his hands were empty, according to the court documents. He said that he had been drinking alcohol and that he knew Teneria had also been drinking.

The bartender told police that “he shot him for no reason.” The bartender then ran outside and called 911, hiding because she thought she might be shot next.

Bonnett was waiting for police when they arrived on scene and told the responding officers, “I shot him.” Officers found Teneria’s body inside with apparent gunshot wounds, according to court documents.

Bonnett will be arraigned at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8. If convicted of reckless homicide, he could be sentenced up to six years in prison.