Two children are in the hospital following two separate shootings. Houston police say both incidents appear to have been accidents.
The shootings happened about six hours apart. One on Houston’s southeast side injured a 9-year-old. The other shooting, on the city’s northeast side, involved a 3-year-old.
Just before 10 p.m. Thursday, HPD was called to a home in the 1600 block of Des Chaumes in the Fifth Ward about a shooting.
At the scene, officers found a 9-year-old boy with a gunshot wound to the neck area. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition but is expected to survive.
Investigators said a teenage boy and the 9-year-old boy, who are neighbors, were out in one of the yards in the area when the gun accidently went off, hitting the 9-year-old in the neck.
HPD said the teen took off after the shooting, but has since been detained.
“The 9-year-old and a 16-year-old, also male. The 16-year-old had a gun with him. Apparently, he was showing this 9-year-old this gun when it appears, at this point, there was an accidental shooting,” Lt. Ignacio Izaguirre said.
Reporters spoke to the teen’s mother, who said her son is 15 years old, not 16, like HPD initially reported. She said she has been praying and worried about the 9-year-old.
The mother said her son has been charged with aggravated assault. She said her son and another teenager tussled over the gun before it went off and hit the little boy.
Earlier Thursday evening, around 5 p.m., police were called to a home in the 3500 block of Ozark Street near Tierwester Street in the Third Ward about a different shooting.
Police said a 3-year-old boy was shot in the face at least once.
Investigators said they are getting conflicting statements from the three adults who were at the home about exactly what happened. At this point, they aren’t sure if the child shot himself or if someone shot him.
There were three other young kids in the house at the time of the shooting, HPD said.
The 3-year-old was taken to the hospital for surgery and was in critical condition.
Reporters are working to get more information about what charges may be filed.