LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) — A 12-year-old Lakeland boy died Friday night after accidentally shooting himself with a gun he found in a car, according to police.
The Lakeland Police Department said at around 7 p.m., officers were sent to a home on Starling Loop for a shooting that involved a child.
There, they found a 12-year-old boy with a gunshot wound. First responders took the child to Tampa General Hospital where he died shortly after.
Investigators said that the child was supposed to be staying at a friend’s house for a sleepover.
According to officers, the victim’s mother told them at the hospital that she was under the impression that there was an adult at the home during the sleepover, but no adults were at the home.
“The family members of the boy who lives in the house, who were at work, were unaware that the victim was at the home as they had not given the boy permission to have any guests over,” the police department.
At some point, the boys entered the home’s garage and found a loaded gun inside of the vehicles there. According to police, the 12-year-old picked up the gun, which went off while he was handling it.
The investigation is still in its early stages. Anyone with more information is asked to call Detective Troy Smith at 863-834-8958 or Troy.Smith@Lakelandgov.net.