Los Angeles: A three-year-old boy in the US has shot and killed his 18-month-old brother with a handgun, adding to the spate of such tragic incidents in the country in the past two months.

The boy died after he was shot in the head by his older brother at a neighbour’s apartment in Payson, Arizona, police said.

The semi-automatic gun that belonged to the man they were visiting was not locked up in a safe, they said.

After the police dispatchers got several calls on Tuesday afternoon, alerting them to a child with a head injury, the officers rushed to find the mother carrying the wounded child to the parking lot of the apartment building.

The boy was taken to Payson Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, Payson police chief Don Engler said.

“The apartment that this occurred in was a family friend of the mother and two children,” Engler was quoted as saying by KPHO-TV.

The family had been there visiting for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Engler said the children found the semi-automatic handgun in the apartment and took it to another room. He said neither adult knew the boys had the weapon.

“The children had slipped into another room unobserved by the mother and the 78-year-old occupant of the apartment,” Engler said.

The victim’s 3-year-old brother pulled the trigger, he said.

This is the latest incident involving children who accidentally shoot someone or die of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

A Florida man was arrested after his 6-year-old nephew shot and killed the man’s father during a family barbeque Sunday.

Juan Manuel Martinez Jr, 28, was charged with culpable negligence of a firearm for not keeping an eye on his loaded AK-47, authorities said.

A four-year-old boy accidentally shot and killed his 19-month-old brother with a handgun in the US state of Kansas on April 29.

On April 18, a three-year-old girl in Cache County, Utah, accidentally shot and killed her two-year-old brother.

A day before that incident, a 6-year-old boy accidentally killed a woman in South Carolina when he shot a loaded gun he found in a car.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal