An 11-year-old boy from California tragically committed suicide while attending distance learning classes, according to authorities.
Deputies responded just to reports that a person had been shot in a house in Woodbridge, on December 2nd according to the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies discovered the child with a head injury — who was then rushed to a nearby hospital. The sheriff’s office reported that the boy died of his injuries several hours later.
“We are deeply saddened to report that based on the preliminary findings, an 11-year-old student from Woodbridge Elementary School has passed away due to injuries from a self-inflicted gunshot wound,” authorities said on Facebook.
Deputy Sandra Mendez, a spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office, said the investigation is “still ongoing.”
“We have been hearing that family members have been reaching out to several different media outlets claiming [it was accidental],” says Mendez. “Sadly, the preliminary findings indicate this was an intentional act, not an accident.”
Mendez informed the Stockton Record how the child and his sister were both attending virtual schooling when the incident occurred.
She stated how the victim’s computer audio and video were not turned on when the gun fired but that his sister heard from a separate room and ran to check on him. After discovering him injured, she alerted her Zoom classroom and ran to the home of a neighbor, who called 911.
“The sister [came] here, banging on the door,” a neighbor who called for help told NBC affiliate KCRA. “That little boy was one the nicest little boys you’ll ever want to know. He was special. Easygoing. He was the type of person who would never hurt anybody. Soft-spoken, with a beautiful smile.”
The child was a sixth-grader at Woodbridge Elementary School, which offered its condolences in a statement shared by Lodi Unified School District Superintendent Cathy Nichols-Washer.
“We are deeply saddened to share that a student from Woodbridge Elementary School passed away today as a result of a gunshot wound,” Nichols-Washer wrote. “Counseling and bereavement support services are available to students and staff during this difficult time.”
“Our thoughts are with the family affected by this terrible tragedy. We also offer our condolences to the Woodbridge Elementary community,” she added.
Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs also offered his condolences via Twitter to the child’s family and friends.
“During this time, we have to check in on each other and our children, and know that community is the antidote to crisis,” he wrote. “We have to prioritize our children as we persist through this pandemic.”
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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