Rifle accident kills 5-year-old

Posted: Friday, November 03, 2006

A bullet wounded and killed a 5-year-old boy after a rifle was discharged by one of the boy’s siblings in their home in Kasilof on Wednesday evening.

At 6:08 p.m. the victim’s mother called 911 and told dispatchers her 5-year-old son had been shot in their home on Macron Road.

The boy was later identified as Patrick McLane Babitt.

Central Emergency Services medics and Alaska State Troopers arrived approximately 17 minutes later and the toddler was rushed to Central Peninsula General Hospital. However, the boy, who had been wounded in the stomach, died in the ambulance before reaching the hospital.

The 5-year-old’s mother told dispatchers a 2-year-old sibling had been handling the rifle when it discharged, but of the four children present when the accident occurred, investigators are not saying which one they believe discharged the weapon, said Greg Wilkinson, spokesperson for Alaska State Troopers.

Wilkinson said the mother was at the residence when the shooting occurred, but that he did not know if the mother had witnessed the shooting.

According to state protocol, an autopsy will be conducted. A trooper investigation into the incident is continuing.

Funeral services are planned for 11 a.m. Saturday at Peninsula Grace Brethren Church, 44175 Kalifornsky Beach Road, in Soldotna, according to a family member.

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