A 10-year-old boy in the Tioga-Nicetown area of Philadelphia has died after a self-imposed gunshot wound to his head. The police say the young boy found the weapon while he and his sister were playing at home alone.
The tragic incident occurred in the evening, around 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 26, when the sibling duo allegedly found a gun inside a dresser, according to ABC News’ Philadelphia station WPVI. In an interview, Philadelphia Police Capt. Lee Strollo told WPVI that the child “discharged the weapon into his own head” upon finding it in the cabinet.
Capt. Lee Strollo also added that a team is looking into the case to deduce who the gun belongs to and how it got to the location. When the 10-year-old boy shot himself, his sister instantaneously ran to the neighbors to call for help. Bystanders said the boy was taken to the hospital but was later declared dead by the team.
In conversation with WPVI, a witness said that society must “get it together,” as little children do not deserve to experience this turmoil. Willie Porter, another witness from North Philadelphia said that the mention of a child involved in a shooting is always heartbreaking and always ends up bringing tears to the eyes.
Police officials said the children should not have been left alone at home and the gun should never have been out in the open. At this point, it is still uncertain how long the children were left unsupervised at home while the parent’s whereabouts continue remain unknown.
According to Capt. Lee Strollo, if the adults even chose to keep a weapon at home, it should have been packed safely somewhere. Only then could they have stopped the unfortunate incident- where the 10-year-old boy shot himself.
Authorities and several police officials have affirmed that the person found having ownership of the gun might face several charges. Soon after the 10-year-old boy shot himself, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw released a statement to the public, urging everyone to “do better in keeping guns out of the hands of our kids.”