Deputies: 3-year-old Midlands child shot, airlifted to hospital

Deputies: 3-year-old Midlands child shot, airlifted to hospital
The Charleston County Sheriff's Office is investigating a homicide in James Island. (Source: AP)

ORANGEBURG COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - A three-year-old child has been airlifted to a hospital after being shot, according to Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell.

"At this time, we are praying and thinking about this child who we believe at this point shot himself after a series of events that placed him next to a loaded weapon," the sheriff said. "It's just tragic and we're pulling for him to make a full recovery."

His condition is not known at this time.

Ravenell said that around 1:45 p.m. Friday a call came out that a child had been shot in the upper body at an Orangeburg business.

Units from the OCSO, the Orangeburg Department of Public Safety, and EMS converged on Sunshine Recycling where the child lay in a car, Ravenell said.

OCSO investigators learned the child had found a gun inside the vehicle, and he apparently shot himself with it, deputies say.

Investigators were told the child's father had had car trouble earlier Friday. The Branchville man called his wife to pick him up.

Before leaving his vehicle beside the road, he removed his handgun and placed it in his wife's car with their three-year-old son, according to deputies.

The shooting happened as the man sought to find a part to repair his vehicle at the vehicle parts section of Sunshine Recycling, they say.

No charges have been filed in the shooting.

"Everything has a time and place," Ravenell said. "Right now we're just hoping and praying this child recovers. We will, however, look at the elements of what happened."

This is a developing story. Check back for details.

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