Valdosta 14-year-old to be charged in accidental fatal shooting of 16-year-old relative

| December 29, 2016

VALDOSTA – A Valdosta 14-year-old is facing felony charges after fatally shooting a 16-year-old family member by accident Wednesday afternoon.

At approximately 5:30 p.m., the Valdosta Police Department responded to a residence in the 1000 block of Cherry Creek Drive in reference to a shooting, said VPD Lt. Adam Bembry.

“Upon arrival, officers found a 16-year-old male juvenile with a gunshot wound to his chest. The victim was transported to the hospital where he later was pronounced deceased,” Bembry said.

An investigation into the incident reportedly revealed that a 14-year-old juvenile relative of the victim was playing with a .22 rifle and accidentally shot the victim.

The 14-year-old is being charged with felony involuntary manslaughter through the Department of Juvenile Justice.

“Although this is a tragic accident and our hearts go out to the family of these young boys, this case was treated like any other death investigation,” said VPD Chief Brian Childress. “When we determined by statute a crime was committed, the juvenile was properly charged.”

VPD is urging parents to talk with their children about gun safety and has provided the following links to resources:

http://www.nssf.org/safety/basics/

https://eddieeagle.nra.org/

http://www.wideopenspaces.com/10-things- teach-kids- gun-safety/

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