By Tony Kukulich
A 5-year-old child is in critical condition after accidentally shooting himself in the head Sunday afternoon, Feb. 13, according to a report from the City of Beaufort Police Department (BPD).
A preliminary investigation by the BPD determined that the child discovered a 9 mm handgun in the vehicle in which he was riding.
Police responded to a 9-1-1 call from the Spanish Trace Apartments, 2400 Southside Blvd., at 4:08 p.m. Upon arrival, officers were informed that a gray SUV left the scene of the incident with the shooting victim. A BPD unit located the SUV en route to Beaufort Memorial Hospital and followed the vehicle to the emergency room entrance.
The victim’s mother, a 23-year-old passenger in the SUV, told police the child had accidentally been shot in the head, and the officer rushed the boy into the emergency room. The medical staff there assessed his condition and transferred him by an air ambulance to the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston.
No charges related to the incident have been filed at this point.
“We have not made that decision yet as the investigation is in the early stages,” BPD special services commander Capt. George Erdel said.
The police investigation into the incident is ongoing. Anyone with any information about the incident is asked to contact MSgt Charles Raley at 843-322-7914, or the Anonymous Tip Line at 843-322-7938.
Tony Kukulich is a recent transplant to the Lowcountry. A native of Wilmington, Del., he comes to The Island News from the San Francisco Bay Area where he spent seven years as a reporter and photographer for several publications. He and his wife enjoy exploring their new home state. He can also frequently be found playing bass guitar with a couple of local bands. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.