Authorities arrested and charged a Miami teen with manslaughter after allegedly shooting his younger sister in the head on accident.
Tedra King, 13, had just given her brother Martaevious Santiago, 17, a hug when he pointed a semi-automatic handgun at her and pulled the trigger, killing her, according to the Miami Herald.
The incident took place on April 25, which also happens to be Santiago’s birthday. The teenager, who called 911, told police it was an accident.
“All he said [was], ‘Daddy, I’m sorry. It was an accident. I’m sorry, Dad,'” his stepfather Vernon Williams explained, according to WSVN. “Those were the words.”
“Enough is enough,” Williams continued. “What more is there to say? It’s happening everyday, but you never know who it’s going to happen to. It happened, and it happened all of a sudden. There’s really no message to say. Everyone knows it’s been time to put the guns down, but who’s listening?”
Williams said he and King’s mother, Lakesha Bess, were both in the house when the shooting occurred just after 8 p.m. Bess reportedly held her daughter in her arms after she was shot.
Santiago is facing charges of aggravated manslaughter of a child and possession of a weapon during the commission of a felony, the Miami Herald reports.
The teen told police he got the firearm from a 14-year-old friend, who was also present during the shooting. Police have not released the friend’s name, although he has reportedly been arrested on an unrelated charge.
In February, Santiago was featured in a WLRN series about youth that had survived gun violence in Miami. According to the report, Santiago was in a car in front of his house in December when shots rang out. He was hit in the leg, while a friend of his survived a shot to the head. Prior to that, Santiago’s 15-year-old brother was shot four times while playing outside, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.
“I never knew how he was feeling until I got shot,” Santiago told WLRN at the time. “Now, I feel the pain. Hang around the wrong crowd of people, this is what happens.”
Florida City Mayor Otis Wallace paid a visit to King’s family the night of the fatal shooting. According to him, investigators believe the gun was taken during a recent burglary. Wallace added that, in his experience, gun ownership oftentimes has tragic consequences.
“I find this to be far more prevalent than people protecting their castles,” he told the Miami Herald.