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No charges filed after 4-year-old fatally shot himself while adults smoked in front seat, JPSO says

Published: Jan. 30, 2022 at 12:20 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 31, 2022 at 6:19 PM CST
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WESTWEGO, La. (WVUE) - A 4-year-old boy was fatally shot inside a vehicle as adults smoked marijuana in the front seat Saturday night (Jan. 29), the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office said.

The tragedy occurred around 10:45 p.m. inside a vehicle parked in the 900 block of Stillwell Lane in unincorporated Westwego, JPSO spokesman Capt. Jason Rivarde said.

According to investigators, two adults were smoking marijuana in the front seat, while the 4-year-old and a 22-month-old were in the back seat.

Sheriff Joe Lopinto says he believes the gun was under the seat where 4-year-old Jarion Walker found it.

“The child was injured not by a hostile act, but by a negligent one,” Rivarde said. “As the adults were smoking marijuana in the front seat, a shot was fired inside the vehicle that struck the victim, causing the fatal injury.”

Walker was transported to a hospital after deputies were called to the scene, but succumbed to his injury at a hospital, the JPSO said.

Following an autopsy, officials were able to determine the gunshot wound was self-inflicted to the head.

The JPSO said anyone in need of a gun lock can call its public affairs division at (504) 363-5500 to have one provided free of cost.

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