HUDSON — An argument over food turned fatal Wednesday evening when a 13-year-old boy shot and killed his 6-year-old brother before turning the handgun on himself, according to preliminary information from Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco.
Before killing himself, the 13-year-old also shot and wounded his 16-year-old brother, Nocco said. The 16-year-old called authorities at 6:19 p.m. and was transported from his Hudson home to a hospital with a gunshot wound that is not considered life-threatening.
"This is a horrific scene," Nocco said. "This is a nightmare when you hear about the ages of these boys, a 6-year-old that was probably playing in his room, an argument over food and he lost his life."
The mother of the three boys was at work when the shooting occurred. A fourth son, who is 18, was not at the home.
Details were scant Wednesday night as the Sheriff's Office pieced together the shooting and its aftermath at the Sugar Lane Mobile Home Park on Bachmann Avenue. Nocco did not identify the victims.
Nocco said his deputies are still investigating who owned the gun and whether the Sheriff's Office had previously responded to the address.
"We're devastated that this would happen to such young children, and we are prepared to provide whatever services are needed at their schools," said Linda Cobbe, spokeswoman for the Pasco County School District. "I can't even imagine."
She said the district's crisis team is standing by.
The sound of a gunshot Wednesday evening shocked Josh Hicks, 13, and his family, who live in a home behind the victims' property.
Hicks said he has shared bus rides to Hudson Middle School with the dead 13-year-old and characterized him as quiet. Hicks said the teenager liked to listen to music and didn't often play outside with neighborhood children. Though he didn't know the boy well, he said, "I didn't think he would ever do something like this."
Contact Claire McNeill at (727) 893-8321 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @ClaireMcNeill.