Family identifies baby shot by older brother; mom issued $38K bond
NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Family members have identified the baby girl police say was accidentally shot by her 3-year-old brother in North Charleston on Thursday.
Ry'leigh McClary, just 8 months old, was wounded in the shooting at 1910 Tulip Street, according to family members.
The girl's mother, 21-year-old Kaela Pryor of Ridgebrook Road, was arrested after the shooting and charged with unlawful conduct towards a child, possession with intent to distribute marijuana, and possession with intent to distribute cocaine base. She received a $38,000 bond on the charges during a hearing Friday morning.
During the hearing, Pryor told the judge she was unemployed because she was busy taking care of a disabled child. She also asked to speak after her bond was set, but the judge declined her request.
North Charleston police said officers arrived at 1910 Tulip Street just before 6 p.m. Thursday and found McClary in a car seat in the living room, suffering from a gunshot wound. Officers found the gun, a Charter Arms "Off Duty" .38 special, on the loveseat nearby. According to court documents, the gun belonged to Pryor.
"My son has somebody's gun and he shot my baby in the stomach," Pryor said in a 911 call released on Friday.
Police say 35 grams of marijuana and 8 grams of a cocaine-based substance were also found in the room.
Investigators said after exhaustive interviews, Pryor admitted she was standing on the front porch talking with friends when she heard what she knew to be a gunshot. She says she ran inside and saw her three-year-old son standing next to the gun, crying. She told officers she lifted up McClary's dress, saw that the baby was shot, and started screaming.
Police say the child accidentally shot the baby.
Pryor said she was at the house visiting her friend and they were planning to cook crabs for dinner. She also said there were two people, one of whom was asleep, inside the home when she walked outside.
A neighbor says she's in disbelief. Theresa Jordan says she's lived in the area for almost two years, and says as far as she knows, nothing like this has happened before.
"I was sitting on my porch and somebody came back behind and said a baby just got shot over there. I said I've been sitting on the porch since 5:40, and I didn't hear anything," Jordan said.
Jordan says she was shaken up after hearing the news.
"Two lives are just gone. You know, it's terrible. They're children, and we're supposed to protect them."
She says it hits close to home.
"I have an 11-month-old granddaughter, and when I heard the news, I called my daughter with that baby and said you better not buy my grandson, not a gun at all, not a water gun, not a play gun, no kind of guns."
The infant was transported to the Medical University of South Carolina in serious condition. The hospital is not releasing any information on the baby's condition.
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