Police: Wilmington boy, 11, accidentally shot brother, 7

April 24, 2013 8:20:32 AM PDT
A 7-year-old boy is recovering after being shot inside his Wilmington home Monday night.

Police responded around 10:00 Monday night to a home on the 200 block of Delamore Place.

A seven-year-old boy had been shot inside the house. Fortunately it was a non-life-threatening injury to his hand.

The shooter was his 11-year-old brother.

An older man answered the door at the house Tuesday.

"I can't talk about it right now," he told Action News. Asked if he knew who had the gun, the man said, "You'll have to talk to somebody else about that."

Wilmington Police were told by the boys' grandfather that he found the gun in the backyard of the home and intended to turn it over to police. The grandfather explained that he put the gun in a high cabinet in the kitchen, but that the boys found it and were playing with it, when the weapon went off.

"The adults in the house have to be responsible for firearms that are in the house," said Crawford. "So if the investigation does reveal that an adult was responsible for having that firearm, then consequences are going to follow."

The police say the family is extremely lucky the boy's injuries weren't more serious or even deadly.

Just two weeks ago, a four-year-old boy in Toms River, New Jersey got hold of a rifle and shot and killed his six-year-old neighbor.

That case is still being investigated, and no one has been charged yet.

Wilmington Police have a simple message for gun owners everywhere.

"If a parent out there, if someone does have firearms in the house, it's very important that you keep them locked up in a safe and keep them away from children," said Crawford.

Police are tracking the history of the gun used in Monday night's shooting. They are not yet revealing the caliber or make of the gun or whether or not it was legally purchased.