(KMOV) – Police say a 6-year-old boy fired a shot that killed an 11-year-old boy while children played at a family barbecue in Belleville.
The boy who died was identified as Leonard J. Smith Jr., who was visiting a home in the first block of north 98th St. when the shooting occurred around 11 p.m.
Detective Mark Heffernan says Leonard was shot when several children found the gun in the upstairs of the home. The handgun was not in a gun safe or a secure area, he said.
Heffernan says the adults were on the main floor of the two-story home when the shooting occurred.
Smith was transported to Belleville Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Belleville Police could not say what the relationship was between the two boys, but said the two were not family members.
The case will be forwarded to the St. Clair County State’s Attorney for possible charges.