MIAMI (AP) — Police in Florida are investigating the unrelated shooting deaths of two young children on both sides of the state Sunday.
Investigators on Monday morning announced the arrest of a 16-year-old boy and the uncle of 4-year-old Amirra Jacques, who apparently found a gun under a bed in a Riviera Beach home on Sunday night. The gun discharged while the girl was playing with it. She was taken to a hospital but died a short time later.
Riviera Beach police spokeswoman Rose Anne Brown said the girl’s uncle, Nathaniel Lowe, 25, originally told officers that someone entered the home through an open door and fired a shot, striking the girl. But investigators determined that the girl shot herself and the 16-year-old had discarded the gun two blocks away, Brown said. The teen led detectives to the gun.
Lowe is charged with culpable negligence, tampering with evidence, grand theft of a firearm and possession of a firearm as a convicted felon. Florida Department of Corrections records show that he was sentenced in February to 22 months of probation for attempted burglary.
The teen is charged with culpable negligence, tampering with evidence, perjury and grand theft of a firearm. His relationship to the girl is unknown.
It wasn’t clear whether the teen will be charged as an adult. Records didn’t say whether Lowe has a lawyer.
No further details were immediately available.
Across the state in Tampa, investigators are trying to determine how 17-month-old Amaya Shafi was killed.
Tampa police said in a news release that she was shot at the Clipper Bay Apartments about 4:12 p.m. Sunday. Her parents drove her to a hospital, where she died.
Investigators were interviewing family members.
(Photo Source: Palm Beach Sheriff County’s Office)