Investigators say three young children were alone in a Grace Street houselate Tuesday afternoon when a 9-year-old boy found a pistol beneath amattress. While he was playing with it, the gun fired and hit his 6-yearold sister in her left cheek near her nose.
Police say the gun belonged to 30-year-old Melvin Powell, boyfriend of thegirl's mother, 29-year-old Amica Bettis. Neither Bettis or Powell werehome when the shooting happened. Powellhas been charged with allowing a minor to access a gun. Police believethe little boy hadno intention of hurting his sister.
"We cannot find intent of harm," said Lt. Wayne Sears of the Rocky MountPolice Department. "Curiosity, yes. A dangerous toy, a life threateningtoy to be curiousabout."
The little girl was flown to Pitt Memorial Hospital in Greenville. Hercondition has been upgraded from critical to serious. Police say they mayseek additional charges in the case.
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