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    Post Boy, 4, shoots and kills playmate, 6

    A four-year-old boy has shot dead a playmate aged six with a .22 calibre rifle in what police have said was an accident.
    Ocean County prosecutor's office spokesman Al Della Fave named the dead boy as Brandon Holt. Toms River police chief Michael Mastronardy said Brandon was pronounced dead at 5pm on Tuesday, nearly 24 hours after the shooting.
    The four-year-old, whose name was withheld, was not injured.
    Prosecutor Joseph Coronato, speaking earlier on Tuesday, said the boy got the .22-caliber rifle from his home and it went off accidentally on Monday evening. The children, whose families live in the neighbourhood, were about 15 yards apart.
    The younger boy's mother called the emergency dispatcher to report the shooting, Coronato said, adding it was too early in the investigation to know whether anyone would be charged. He would not say who owned the gun or speculate on how the child got it.
    Mastronardy called the shooting tragic and said it affected the whole community, a sentiment shared by those who live there.
    One resident said the two families had not lived in the neighborhood for long and she did not know them well. "I'm sad for the children involved and their families but I'm angry with whoever owns that gun and allowed a little child to get hold of it. A four-year-old can't load a gun," said Debi Coto, who lives a few doors down. "I had just been telling my sister how nice it is to see kids playing together and enjoying themselves, and then this happens."
    Coto said the four-year-old's mother seemed very upset in the minutes after the shooting and appeared to be trying to comprehend what had happened.
    A few days earlier a four-year-old boy in Tennessee picked up a loaded gun at a family cookout and accidentally shot dead the wife of a sheriff's deputy. The deaths come amid debate over gun control in the wake of December's elementary school massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

    Boy, 4, shoots and kills playmate, 6 | World news | guardian.co.uk

    Why wasn't the 6-year-old armed?


 

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