Deputies say the pastor’s 2-year-old son was accidentally shot in the church parking lot
Burke County sheriff’s deputies are investigating an accidental shooting at a church involving a 2-year-old boy.
The toddler, the son of the church’s pastor, was taken to a Charlotte hospital Sunday with life-threatening injuries.
Burke County Sheriff’s deputies are investigating an accidental shooting in a church parking lot involving a 2-year-old boy. The child was airlifted to the hospital. The latest investigative news today on Channel 9 Eyewitness News at noon and 5:30 p.m pic.twitter.com/yXFTAtrbQh
– Dave Faherty (@FahertyWSOC9) October 16, 2023
Sheriff’s deputies said the shooting happened after service at River Valley Baptist Church along Conley Bumgarner Road in west Morganton.
Eyewitnesses described hearing gunfire inside a car in the parking lot. Investigators are still working to determine exactly how this happened and whether or not the little boy accidentally shot himself.
Glen Alpine Fire released photos of the medical helicopter that landed nearby to airlift the child.
Outside the church Monday afternoon, Channel 9’s Dave Faherty could see shattered glass near the scene of the shooting.
Several neighbors and church members told Faherty they couldn’t believe what happened. Kevin Barlow attends River Valley Baptist Church and lives next door. He could hear people screaming after the shooting, and said he and his wife stayed up most of the night praying for the family.
“My heart goes out to them,” Barlow said. “We will help in any way we can, and God is the help you need.”
Theresa Jordan was home when the shooting happened.
“It just breaks my heart,” she said.
She could see church members gathering around the little boy in the parking lot afterward. Jordan said she has guns in her home, but takes precautions to keep them out of reach of children.
“I feel for the family. It breaks my heart,” she said. “It shows you how quickly your life can change.”
The investigation is still ongoing, the sheriff said Monday. Deputies seized the gun and plan to meet with the district attorney to allow him to decide on charges, he said.
Investigators are still trying to determine exactly how someone gained access to the gun and who fired the gun.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
(WATCH BELOW: Person accidentally shoots himself at CMPD training academy)