TACOMA, Wash. — A 23-year-old man has been charged with murder in the death of his mom’s boyfriend July 4 south of Tacoma.

The Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office says Tyler Thiel was charged Thursday in the death that prosecutors say happened while Thiel was assaulting 52-year-old Stephen Gale in Steilacoom.

Steilacoom police officers responded to Gale’s home Tuesday night after Thiel’s mother called to report she had a physical altercation with Thiel and that her boyfriend was down and hurt.

Prosecutors say police found Gale on the ground with a wound to his forehead. Prosecutors say efforts to revive Gale were unsuccessful.

Thiel’s mother reported she had seen Gale and Thiel fighting and that Thiel had hit her and continued to beat Gale before leaving.

Thiel pleaded not guilty in court Thursday and had bail set at $1 million.

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