Nine-year-old accidentally shoots, critically injures five-year-old

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SOUTH  BEND, Ind., --- A five-year-old boy is in the hospital in critical condition, after police said his nine-year-old relative accidentally shot him over the weekend.

City leaders ABC57 spoke with said they hope to send a message to the community so no more families have to go through this kind of devastation.

“It makes me feel sad, but I hate that this accident has taken place. I can only imagine what the parents are going through. Our prayers for the best for the family,” said

Second District Common Councilman Henry Davis Jr. spoke out about by tragic event that happened over the weekend in his district.

South Bend authorities said a nine-year-old accidentally shot another five-year-old boy just before 10:30 pm Saturday on Woodbine Way in South Bend.

“I have a child of my own right and so it makes your heart flutter in different way, and we want not only safety for all children but all residents of this community.”

“The amount of grief that this causes in our communities and the families impacted it just cascades across the entire community. The community is mourning with this family but it’s becoming too common, and we’ve got to an end to it,” added South Bend Mayor James Mueller.

The devastating accidental shooting only adds to the recent violence in South Bend, an ongoing issue city leader are still working to address.

“We need the community to come together, and we also need common sense policy at the state and federal levels to keep guns out of the wrong hands,” explained Mueller.

 “We need more tax-based expansion in those communities. We need to make sure that these other parts of the community that are impacted by gun violence at a high level are a part of the priority of city planning,” added Davis Jr.

As the family and the community work to grapple with the latest tragedy, officials also shared a message in hopes of preventing incidents like these in the future.

“Lock it away when you don’t have it. Keep it on safety when you’re not using it and do the things that are responsible as a gun owner,” echoed Davis Jr.

“Shootings affect everybody and so again let’s look at ways where we can impact our young people in a positive way. Let’s be very careful and these types of tragedies can be avoided,” added First District Councilman Pastor Canneth Lee, who’s also the director of the city’s Group Violence Intervention Program.

It’s still unclear if adults were around when the shooting happened or just how the nine-year-old got ahold of the gun, but again the incident is underway investigation by South Bend Police.

Group Violence Intervention is also offering mental health services to the child involved, his family and the community.

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