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Cleveland school releases statement after 7-year-old boy dies from gunshot wound

Cleveland police say it's possible the boy accidentally shot himself after finding the firearm.

CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) is speaking out after one of its students, a 7-year-old boy, died after being shot over the weekend in Cleveland.

The following statement was released to 3News on Monday:

"Students and staff at Luis Munoz Marin School are grieving the tragic death of one of their beloved first graders over the weekend.

"Grief counselors are at the school to assist students and staff today, and will continue to support them throughout the week, as needed."  

The Cleveland Division of Police is investigating the death of the boy after officers responded to both MetroHealth Medical Center, and a home in the 3200 block of West 30th Street, reporting the shooting on Saturday afternoon.

The child was taken to MetroHealth Medical Center by a private vehicle. The Cleveland Division of Police confirmed that the boy was pronounced dead at the hospital, and he has since been identified as Demetrius Dunlap.

Authorities believe Demetrius may have gained access to a firearm and shot himself, though that has not been confirmed at this time.

3News reached out to police for an update but they did not release any new details about the investigation Monday. Without knowing the exact cause and going off the limited details, questions have arisen about proper gun safety and storage.

"When you have kids in the house make them aware of it, the more you hide it the more they're going to find it," said Beau Brickman.

Brickman is a manager at Stonewall Tactical in Broadview Heights. He said it is imperative to take the necessary steps to properly lock and store every gun you have, especially if there are kids in the home.

"They don’t just walk around by themselves, its something that you have to make it fire, you have to hold it and pull the trigger," Brickman said.

He suggested talking to your kids about guns, explaining how they work and what they do to help avoid any tragic accidents from happening.

"A lot of kids they just see it in a video game of bullet comes out, I can just respawn, real life that doesn't happen," Brickman said. "Bullet comes out, you cant take it back, hopefully its drywall but sometimes it ends up being a person on the other end of the barrel."

Brickman said there are a number of different safety options, including locks, safes and even biometric devices. He said that many police departments offer free locks, you just have to call and ask.

Editor's Note: The following video is from a previous report.


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