The firearm belonged to their 53-year-old father, who allegedly left it in a bag in one of the rooms in the house.
Polokwane – Police in Mankweng have opened a case of murder after a 12-year-old boy allegedly shot dead his three-year-old brother at Makgeng village, gaMolepo in the Mankweng district east of Polokwane on Saturday morning, Limpopo police said.
The firearm belonged to their 53-year-old father, who allegedly left it in a bag in one of the rooms in the house, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said in a statement.
“The suspect managed to access the firearm and somehow shot his younger brother. The mother was allegedly alerted by the gunshot sound and rushed to investigate. She then realised that the worst had happened. The badly injured child was rushed to the local clinic, but was certified dead on arrival. The police were then informed about the incident and immediately commenced with investigations.”
The father, a former security officer, was apparently not at home at the time of the incident and he allegedly left his firearm in a bag hung against the wall in his room. The firearm had been seized by police, Mojapelo said.
Limpopo South African Police Service (SAPS) commissioner Lt-Gen Nneke Ledwaba condemned the incident and directed that in addition to the investigations into the circumstances of the shooting, “appropriate steps be taken against the father for keeping the firearm in contravention of the Firearms Control Act”.
“I urge all lawful firearm owners to, at all times, keep them in the locked safes to avoid unauthorised access,” Ledwaba said.
The 12-year-old boy would be dealt with in accordance with the processes governing children in conflict with the law. Probation officers had already been engaged to take the process forward. Police investigations into the circumstances of the shooting were under way, Mojapelo said.
African News Agency (ANA)