Five-year-old boy shoots dead his eight-year-old brother in 'tragic accident' at US home

·1-min read

A five-year-old boy has shot dead his eight-year-old brother in a "tragic accident" at a US home.

After a 911 call on Thursday afternoon, sheriffs went to a house in Jefferson County, Arkansas, to find a child "unresponsive" inside.

The county coroner was called and the child was declared dead.

Four other siblings and the mother were thought to be inside the home when the fatal shot was fired.

Investigators believe it was an accident.

Sheriff Lafayette Woods said: "This is a tragic incident that could have been avoided.

"I can't emphasise strongly enough that guns need to be well secured and kept out of the hands and away from children at all times.

"Gun owners that do not properly secure their firearms are just one split second away from one of these tragedies happening in their home."

According to statistics from the Brady Campaign, a non profit group that advocates for gun control, every day, 321 people are shot in the United States, with 111 of those killed.

Among those, 22 children and teens are shot.

In May, 19 children and two staff were killed by high school dropout Salvador Ramos in a shooting at a primary school in Uvalde, Texas.

Read more:
Maps show extent of gun violence in America
More than 700 people shot dead in the US since the Texas school shooting

The Arkansas Department of Human Services was notified about the shooting, with caseworkers arriving to assess the welfare of the children living in the home, as well as other conditions.

Family members could be seen gathering outside the home as deputies continued their investigation at the scene.

A post-mortem examination will be carried out.

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