A 14-year-old in Henry County, Georgia unintentionally shot and killed his 15-year-old brother early Saturday morning while playing with his mother’s gun, according to police. The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that charges may be brought against the teenager and his mother, who have not yet been named. Though the mother left the handgun unloaded, the brothers were apparently still able to use it:
The brothers, along with a friend who was spending the night, had gotten the mother’s handgun, “which at the time had been unloaded,” [Police Sargent] Smith said.
“During the course of the evening and early morning hours, one of the boys had evidently loaded the weapon, Smith said. “The 14-year-old at some point pointed the weapon at his brother and pulled the trigger, which resulted in the 15-year-old being struck in the chest area.”
The number of children killed in accidental shootings increased from 68 in 2009 to 84 in 2010, reversing a 20-year decline. There were 851 accidental gun deaths of all ages in 2011, up from 606 the previous year.
Saturday’s Gun Appreciation Day provided several more examples of how responsible gun ownership can still lead to tragedy; 5 people were accidentally shot at 3 different gun shows around the country.