On Monday, August 3, an 11-year-old boy was arrested by the Detroit Police Department for the fatal shooting of 3-year-old Elijah Walker. Although investigators have stated that the shooting was accidental, recent reports indicate that the shooting suspect is now facing manslaughter charges.
According to the Detroit Free Press, the suspect — whose name has not been released — allegedly snuck into his father’s room and removed the handgun from a bedroom closet. Court documents reveal that the 11-year-old allegedly tossed the gun out of the bedroom window and retrieved it from the yard when he walked outside. With the gun in hand, he went to sit inside a parked car. CBS Detroit reports that Walker was shot in the face shortly after joining the 11-year-old inside the vehicle. Walker was rushed to a local hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
Due to the circumstances surrounding the horrific shooting, the boy has been charged with manslaughter. On Wednesday, August 5, the charges were announced at a preliminary juvenile hearing. Even though the shooting has been confirmed to be an accident, unfortunately, it is still defined as manslaughter — “death by weapon aimed with intent but without malice, and felony firearm,” the publication reports.
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy has released a statement about the charges, admitting that the disheartening tragedy is extremely unfortunate for both the shooter and the victim.
“I cannot remember a time where we have charged someone so young with taking a life. Very unfortunately and very tragically, the alleged facts in this case demanded it,” Worthy said in a statement. “The charged respondent here will remain in the Juvenile system, but the case remains under investigation. As a result of that, I will not say more at this time.”
A GoFundMe account has been set up to cover Elijah Walker’s funeral expenses. The 11-year-old is still reportedly being held at the Juvenile Detention Center but now has a bond of $5,000. Although the gun belonged to the father, it is unclear whether or not he will face charges for the fatal shooting. The investigation will be ongoing.
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