An 8-year-old Washington County boy is dead after what authorities said was an accidental shooting near Ochelata Sunday night.
Deputies say a 15-year-old boy was showing some guns to the younger boy when a shotgun fell over and discharged.
Sergeant Jon Copeland said it appears to just be a tragic accident.
“There was a discussion of looking at some guns, and the 15 year old showed the 8 year old a shotgun that he had, leaned that against a tire, went to look for a different gun, and, at some point, the shotgun leaned against a tire fell to the ground and discharged one round,” Copeland said.
Washington County deputies said the two boys were at a house alone at the time of the shooting; the 15 year old drove the younger boy to another house where some adults called for help.
The 8 year old died at the scene.
Copeland said, “Everything we've been able to determine, it was fairly close, but not a point-blank, there was some distance between the end of the gun and where he was standing.”
The sergeant said the accident could have been prevented with some basic firearms safety.
“Making sure anytime we handle firearms, they're unloaded, unless you're getting ready to shoot or hunt. Just taking basic safety precautions to make sure you and everybody around us can be safe,” he said.
The sheriff's office has not released names of the boys involved.