Child Accidentally Shot in Head Dies

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Update: Police said the four-year-old girl who was accidentally shot in the head on Jan. 10 passed away on Jan. 17.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Authorities say that a young girl was shot in the head in an apparent accident in a south Kansas City home around noon on Thursday.

The four-year-old girl, whose name has not been released, was taken to an area hospital in critical condition.

According to police, the shooting happened in a home near Birchwood Drive and Monroe. A woman was at the home, babysitting four children -- all between four and six years of age -- in the front room of the house where there was a loaded handgun.

"It sounds like the gun was left on some type of chair," said Sgt. Marissa Barnes of the Kansas City Missouri Police Department. "It's not exactly known what went down. The adult that was in the house, left the room, heard the shot, came back in and the child was injured."

Police say that the injured child was a relative of the woman in charge of her care, but authorities say that they aren't sure if the other children -- who were not injured in the incident -- are also related. The name of the woman has not been released.

Neighbor Dan Peters says that many young children lived in the house. He says that he always assumed that they were cared for by grandparents.

"It really is sad," said Peters. "Stuff like this never happens in this neighborhood. so it does come as a shock -- especially with all the stuff going on in the news with gun activity and everything. You hear about it, but now that it's right down the street it's totally different."

Police say that they will be interviewing all the children to determine what happened, and then send their reports to prosecutors to decide if criminal charges are warranted.

"We always stress the need to secure weapons, especially when there are children around," said Sgt. Barnes. "Accidents like this happen, and its unfortunate we have to have something like this to bring attention to this type of issue."

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