3-year-old boy finds gun in home and pulls the trigger, killing himself, CMPD says

A curious 3-year-old boy died when he found a loaded gun in an east Charlotte apartment and pulled the trigger, investigators say.

His death is considered a tragic accident that could have been prevented, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say.

The shooting happened around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 21, in the 2300 block of Eastway Drive, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said in a news release.

“MEDIC responded and transported the victim to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. The child was pronounced deceased a short time later,” CMPD said.

“The initial investigation reveals that the shooting appears to be self-inflicted from an unsecured firearm. All parties are accounted for and detectives are not looking for anyone at this time.”

Details of where the gun was stored have not been revealed.

The weapon is owned one of the boy’s parents, who was in the Wendover Gardens apartment at the time, according to the Observer’s news partner WSOC.

“If you own firearms ... you have to keep them secured and locked,” CMPD Maj. Bret Balamucki told WSOC. “A tragedy like this should wake us all up on understanding the importance of the responsibility we all have.”

The shooting remains under investigation. No charges have been filed.

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