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1-year-old fatally shot by toddler who found unsecured gun, Canton police say

Published: Oct. 26, 2021 at 9:43 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 26, 2021 at 7:35 PM EDT
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CANTON, Ohio (WOIO) - The Canton Police Department initiated a death investigation following the fatal accidental shooting of a 1-year-old child.

According to Chief Jack Angelo, the dispatch center received a 911 call at approximately 5:30 p.m. on Monday from a Royal Avenue NE residence for reports of the shooting.

Police and first responders discovered the 1-year-old child suffering from a gunshot wound.

Paramedics rushed the boy to Cleveland Clinic Mercy Medical Center for treatment, but the child was pronounced dead just after 7 p.m.

Investigators said it appears another child, who is almost 3 years old, found an unsecured firearm along with the victim.

The gun was accidentally discharged, striking the victim in the face, according to the Canton police report.

Neighbors report hearing a gunshot and then screams for help.

Dawn Campbell was outside putting up Halloween decorations.

“I heard a woman coming up the street crying, ‘get my baby, get my baby,’ and I didn’t know what to do, so I went over and grabbed her and tried to console her,” Campbell said.

Next door to the home, a family friend, a 15 year old girl, heard the commotion and came outside to find the young mother frantic for help, wanting someone to pick up her baby, because she was to frightened and traumatized to do so herself.

“I wanted to cry so bad but I knew I couldn’t put what was wrong with me in front of the baby so I was just worried about the baby more than anything,” she said.

Canton police are investigating.

“We remind everyone that unsecured firearms should not be kept where children have access to them,” the Canton Police Department wrote in a press release. “This is preventable tragedy.”

Canton police said gun locks are available for free from most law enforcement agencies, including Canton.

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