8-year-old girl killed after gun found while she was home alone with 10-year-old brother in Detroit

‘I’ve got kids that should be in school, so it shouldn’t have happened,’ police chief says

An 8-year-old girl was killed Tuesday when she and her 10-year-old brother found a gun while they were home alone in the middle of the day instead of at school, Detroit’s police chief said.

DETROIT – An 8-year-old girl was killed Tuesday when she and her 10-year-old brother found a gun while they were home alone in the middle of the day instead of at school, Detroit’s police chief said.

UPDATE: Detroit mother charged in death of 8-year-old girl whose brother found gun while home alone

The shooting happened around 11:50 a.m. Tuesday (Sept. 13) in the 8800 block of Heyden Road, according to Detroit police.

Officials said the children were at home without any adults when one of them found an unsecured gun. The weapon was fired, and the girl’s neck and shoulder were injured, authorities said.

It’s unclear which child fired the weapon.

“This is tragic,” Detroit police Chief James White said. “I’ve got an 8-year-old and a 10-year-old in a house with an unsecured weapon. I’ve got kids that should be in school, so it shouldn’t have happened. The gun shouldn’t have been left there. They shouldn’t even be there to have the gun left there. They should be in class.”

White said the girl was rushed to a nearby fire station, where firefighters tried to stabilize her while medical officials were on the way.

“We believe that the mother or a neighbor may have transported the child to the fire house, which is less than a quarter-mile away from this location,” White said.

She was eventually taken to the hospital, but died from her injuries. White said it’s unclear if the girl died before or after she arrived.

Detroit police are waiting for a search warrant, and they’re confident they will find the weapon inside the home. Meanwhile, child abuse investigators are at the scene, and authorities are checking up on the 10-year-old boy.

“We’ve got some concerns with some other things that we’re working on with the child now, so he’s going to get medical attention, as well as investigative (attention),” White said. “We just want to make sure the child is OK. We found some conditions inside the home that are quite concerning.”

Officials said the boy’s medical condition isn’t severe, but they want to make sure he’s OK.

“We’ve got to quit dancing around it,” White said. “It’s responsibility -- that’s what you have to have. If you’re going to have a gun in your home, you need to have responsibility with the gun. Period.”

The investigation is ongoing. Officers plan to interview the mother of the children, neighbors, and anyone involved in the incident.

You can watch White’s full briefing below.

An 8-year-old girl was killed Tuesday when she and her 10-year-old brother found a gun while they were home alone instead of being in school, Detroit’s police chief said.
A little girl was killed in what appears to be another case of adults leaving children at home with an unsecured gun. Detroit police are trying to get answers to several questions, including why that girl and her 10-year-old brother were not at school.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.