Pasco sheriff: Boy, 10, conscious after being shot while playing with gun

Published Dec. 19, 2017

DADE CITY — A 10-year-old boy was shot in the head Monday in what the Pasco County Sheriff's Office is calling an "accidental" shooting that took place while he and another child were playing with a gun.

The 10-year-old and a 9-year-old boy were home alone, the Sheriff's Office said, while they were handling the unidentified firearm. The agency did not identify either child or say which one was holding the weapon when it was fired.

Deputies were unsure of the wounded boy's medical condition, but said the child was awake and able to talk to first responders after the shooting.

"The 10-year-old was conscious and alert and speaking, which is a good thing," sheriff's spokesman Melanie Snow said. "It's too early to say the injuries are not life-threatening, because any time you're dealing with a head injury, it's a scary thing."

The incident took place about 3 p.m. Deputies were summoned to a home on the 38800 block of Old Sparkman Road where they said they found the wounded 10-year-old boy "alert and talking."

After the shooting, the 9-year-old boy went to a neighbor's house on the same street to call for help, Snow said. The wounded child was rushed to a local hospital for treatment.

Deputies are investigating how the boys got hold of the gun in the first place.

"If it was inside the home already, was it a secured gun, was it left out in the open for the children to have easy access to it?" Snow said. "These are all questions we're trying to answer."

No other details were released about the shooting.