4-Year-Old Boy Fatally Shot After Finding Gun at Babysitter's House

A 4-year-old boy was killed when he accidentally shot himself with a gun he discovered at a babysitter’s house in northwest Indiana Saturday, authorities said.

Eric Cole, of the 4100 block of Leroy Place in Wheatfield, Indiana, was pronounced dead of a gunshot wound Saturday afternoon, according to the Lake County Coroner’s office.

At around 10:50 a.m., officers responded to a call at a home in the 7700 block of East 120th Avenue in Crown Point, Indiana, the Lake County Sheriff’s Department said.

The initial investigation indicated that Cole found a handgun under the bed in an upstairs bedroom of his babysitter’s home, and was able to open its case and access the firearm, authorities said.

As he was handling the gun, it fired a single round, according to police, fatally striking the boy.

He was taken Franciscan Health Hospital in Crown Point, where he was pronounced dead shortly after 12 p.m., according to the Lake County Coroner’s office.

The sheriff’s department is investigating the incident as an accident and authorities do not expect charges to be filed.

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