Johnson City Press Tuesday, September 16, 2014

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UPDATE: Carter County teen in 'stable' condition after suffering gunshot to neck

March 1st, 2014 1:45 pm by Max Hrenda

UPDATE: Carter County teen in 'stable' condition after suffering gunshot to neck

A 13-year-old Carter County boy was described as being in stable condition after suffering a gunshot wound to his neck this weekend.

On Saturday afternoon, Carter County sheriff’s deputies responded to 123 Herman Peters Road in the Stoney Creek community after receiving a call that a boy had been shot while he was playing with his older brother.

According to Sheriff Chris Mathes, who was at the scene, the boy was shot after he and his brother came across a pistol. The boys, Mathes said, thought the gun was unloaded and began to play with it.

“Thirteen- and 14-year-old juvenile brothers had apparently gotten a handgun that was buried in a closet ... and were looking at it,” Mathes said. “The 13-year-old boy was shot in the neck.”

Mathes said his investigators believe the boy’s older brother was holding the gun when it went off, sending a bullet into the 13-year-old. In addition to the neck wound, Mathes said, the boy also suffered a secondary wound after the bullet exited his body.

“From what I understand, it was in the neck and it came out of his shoulder,” Mathes said.

Mountain States Health Alliance’s Wings Air Rescue took the boy to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment. As of Saturday evening, Mathes said he was told the boy was in “stable, non-life-threatening” condition.

As his investigators began looking into the incident, Mathes said, as of Saturday evening, they did not believe the older brother fired the shot intentionally.

“This far in the investigation, it appears to be an accidental shooting,” he said.

He added, however, that the investigation was ongoing.

REPORTED EARLIER:

A 13-year-old Carter County boy was airlifted to a local hospital after authorities said he was shot in the neck.

On Saturday afternoon, Carter County sheriff’s deputies responded to 123 Herman Peters Road, in Carter County’s Stoney Creek community, after receiving a call that the boy had been shot.

According to Sheriff Chris Mathes, who was at the scene, the boy was shot after he and his brother found a pistol.

“Thirteen- and 14-year-old juvenile brothers had apparently gotten a handgun that was buried in a closet ... and were looking at it,” Mathes said. “The 13-year-old boy was shot in the neck. From what I understand, it was in the neck and it came out of his shoulder.”

Mountain States Health Alliance’s Wings Air Rescue was called to the scene, and, after their arrival, took the boy to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment.

“It’s my understanding that he’s in fair condition,” Mathes said.

Mathes said the circumstances surrounding the shooting had yet to be determined. He and his deputies remained at the scene to continue the investigation.

“Whether it was accidental, or he shot himself, or there was an altercation, I don’t know,” Mathes said. “We’re trying to sort through that.”

Check back here for more details on this story as they emerge.

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