Toddler Shoots, Seriously Injures 5-Year-Old Sibling in Texas

A 3-year-old reportedly shot their 5-year-old sibling at a home in Texas on Sunday.

Police were called to the 1100 block of East Rice Street in Lubbock to reports of a shooting.

"Officers are responding to a call for service in the 1100 block of E Rice Street where a 3 year old shot a 5 year old sibling," the Lubbock Police Department said in a tweet on Sunday afternoon.

The 5-year-old was taken by EMS to the University Medical Center with serious injuries.

It remains unknown whether any adults were with the children at the time of the shooting. The current condition of the injured child is also unclear.

Footage captured by KCBD showed a large police presence surrounding the home, with police crime scene tape cordoning off the yard and much of the property.

Newsweek has contacted the Lubbock Police Department for comment.

Lubbock Shooting
A 3-year-old reportedly shot their 5-year-old sibling at a home on the 1100 block of East Rice Street in Lubbock, Texas on Sunday. Google Maps

The shooting in Texas is just the latest in a spate of similar accidents across the U.S., as young children manage to get hold of guns.

In similarly tragic news, last week a toddler in nearby Tennessee died when another young child accidentally shot him after finding a gun.

Officials with the Clarksville Police Department said a two-year-old boy was fatally shot at a home on Pembroke Road in Clarksville around 10 p.m. on February 17.

Police said three children under the age of four were at the home when one of the children found and picked up an unsecured handgun.

The gun reportedly went off and the two-year-old was hit, dying as a result of his injuries.

Julian Chester, 31, the boyfriend of the children's mother, was arrested on unrelated charges.

And last month, a toddler playing with a gun shot dead his 5-year-old cousin at a Detroit home.

The 18-month-old boy reportedly got hold of the weapon while at the property with his father, his cousin, his grandmother and a baby girl.

The bullet hit the 5-year-old boy in the neck at the home in the 2400 block of Sturtevant Street, where police were called at 9:30 a.m. on January 20.

"It was reported that an 18-month-old got a hold of a gun in the home that was accessible ... grabbed it ... started playing with and accidentally shot the 5-year-old," she said. "I'm not sure the 18-month-old is even aware of what occurred," Detroit Police Department Commander Tiffany Stewart told reporters.

Officers detained the toddler's father, who is also the 5-year-old's uncle, over the incident. Commander Stewart called the boy's death "completely avoidable."

Hundreds of American children gain access to firearms and unintentionally shoot themselves or someone else every year, according to campaign group Everytown for Gun Safety. Every year, nearly 350 children under the age of 18 unintentionally shoot themselves or someone else, the organization reports.

There were at least 324 unintentional shootings by children in 2020, resulting in 127 deaths and 211 injuries, according to the group's #NotAnAccident index, which tracks such shootings. In more than half of those incidents, the shooter was a child aged five or under.

The group says research shows an estimated 4.6 million children in the U.S. live in homes where there is at least one gun that is loaded and unlocked. The group urges gun owners to take extra precautions when children are in the presence of firearms.

In fact, death by gunshot was the second-highest cause of death across the U.S. among those aged 1 to 19 in 2016, according to a study released by the New England Journal of Medicine two years ago. Only car crashes led to more deaths.

Eight children a day are unintentionally injured or killed in the U.S. because of an unlocked or unsupervised gun in the home, according to the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.