Hanging over the entry of the suburban home in Frederick was the sort of decoration that's commonplace in the days leading to Halloween: a winged Grim Reaper.
But what was once a symbol of holiday high spirits had been transformed into something much more literal. That's because a three year old child who'd lived at the house was dead, and preliminary evidence suggests that he suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Photos, video and the very sad details below.
At about 9:45 a.m. yesterday, according to the Longmont Times-Call, Frederick police were called to a home on the 500 block of Pine Street.
The woman who dialed 911 didn't mention a shooting. Rather, she reportedly said her child had suffered from an apparent fall and was losing a lot of blood. She added that he wasn't breathing.
Left out of this account was the fact that the boy's body was found in a bedroom near a handgun that had been recently fired. As noted by 9News, a bullet was found in the bed, after presumably ricocheting off a wall.
Emergency personnel rushed the boy to a nearby hospital, but he was pronounced dead just over an hour later.
At this writing, no names have been released in the case, and neither have any charges been announced. But authorities, including personnel from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, appear to be leaning toward the boy firing the gun himself rather than being shot by someone else.
Of course, allegations could result from this scenario, too, if the inquiry finds that the gun was left in such an accessible place that its location qualified as criminal neglect. In the meantime, however, we offer our sincere condolences to the child's family, friends and loved ones.
Here's a 9News report, followed by an interactive graphic of the area near the scene. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."
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Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.
More from our News archive circa September: "Photos: Premila Lal accidentally killed by friend Nerrek Galley searching for intruder."