A young child died yesterday in an accidental shooting in Houston. Codrick Beal, 4, had spent the night with a babysitter and family friend while his mother celebrated her birthday, when he got hold of a loaded firearm in the house yesterday morning and fatally shot himself, reports the Houston Chronicle. "My baby is gone," Codrick's mother, Ashley Beal, lamented outside the house. The babysitter, meanwhile, fell to the ground convulsing as she sobbed outside her home; paramedics later returned to pick her up. "It's just a terrible accident," a cousin of Codrick's mom tells the Chronicle. "We see it all the time on the news but you never think it'll hit home. It's the most horrible thing."
Investigators are still trying to determine how the boy got hold of the weapon, reports ABC 13. An average of 62 kids under the age of 14 die every year in accidental shootings in the US, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, though other figures suggest these numbers too low. Authorities did not divulge what type of gun was fired, to whom it was registered, or where Codrick died. (Last year, a 3-year-old accidentally shot his 18-month-old brother to death in Arizona.)