Chicago: 5-year-old boy takes his own life

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A 5-year-old Chicago boy died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound after finding a gun inside his relative's home in Gary, police said.

A 32-year-old man told police that residents of the home gave him permission to visit and check on the boy and a 17-year-old Chicago girl while the adults were away.

The man told officers he came home early Wednesday after a night of partying and, believing he was alone, “put down his gun and fell asleep,” the Gary Police Department said in a statement.

He told police he "was woken up by a loud noise and saw the child being shot," according to the statement. The man told police he believes the boy had shot himself accidentally.

He took the boy to a hospital, where he died from his injuries Wednesday morning.

Officers detained the man, who has not been charged as police continue to investigate the shooting, Gary police Commander Samuel Roberts said Thursday. He said investigators are reviewing the evidence and asking the public to provide tips as they work to determine “whether it really was an accident or something more than an accident.”

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