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Family of Slain Vestal Teen File Lawsuit

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

A lawsuit is working its way through court in Broome County in connection with the strangulation death of a Vestal girl.

Shelby Jenkins was killed in June, 2012 and her boyfriend, Steven Lipka pleaded guilty to manslaughter. Lipka, who is now 20 years old, admitted he had been drinking at his grandparents’ home the night of killing.

The girl’s family is suing Lipka’s grandparents and a neighbor under allegations the three allowed the under-aged Lipka to consume alcohol prior to an argument and Jenkins death.

The lawsuit filed last month in Broome County Supreme Court claims neighbor Keith Cleveland bought the alcohol for the teens.  He’s currently facing criminal charges for allegedly providing the alcohol. The suit also alleges the grandparents, Faye Lika-Pellett and Michael Pellett allowed the drinking to occur.

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