Tony Shin

Mother Arrested After 12-Year-Old Accidentally Shoots, Kills Twin Brother

A 12-year-old boy is dead after investigators say he was accidentally shot by his own twin brother in San Bernardino, and the twins' mother has been arrested, authorities say.

Investigators say there were no adults at the home on East Central Avenue when one of the brothers found a gun and pulled the trigger, not realizing the weapon was loaded.

"It's a tragedy; it just shocked the neighborhood," Julio Chavez, a neighbor, says.

"You hear a kid die in our neighborhood...I have a stepson, and he's almost that age," Katherine Chavez, Julio Chavez's wife, says.

The Chavez family has three kids of their own, which is why they say they don't have any guns at home.

"The same reason why I don't (want) my kids trying to think it's a toy and start playing out here with it or something." 

Investigators say the boy found the gun in his parent's bedroom, thinking it wasn't real or loaded and pointed it at his brother. The 12-year-old shot his twin brother in the torso.

Their mother apparently rushed home after hearing what happened and even parked her car the wrong way on Central Avenue.

Neighbors want to know why the kid's had access to the firearm.

"The parents should have been more secure with the gun, (put it) somewhere more safe, so the child wouldn't be able to get it," Eduardo Garcia, another neighbor, says.

Officers arrested the boy's mother, 45-year-old Gabriela Keeton. She faces one count of felony child cruelty causing injury or death.

Neighbors say the shooting is a tragic reminder of why you cant be careless with guns.

"They should have known not to leave the gun lying around," Katherine Chavez says.

Investigators say the boy's father is in the hospital with an unrelated illness.

At this point, it is unclear who is caring for the surviving brother, but police say they have notified Child Protective Services.

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