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4-Year-Old Dies After Early Morning New Year's Day Shooting At Texas Apartment Complex

ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) — A 4-year-old boy is dead after a shooting that happened minutes after the clock ticked past midnight on New Year's Day in Arlington.

Police say the child was shot while in an apartment on the north side of the city.

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(credit: CBSDFW.COM)

Investigators say a man now in custody, Zantyler Foster, initially lied about what happened out of fear he would be in trouble with police. When first questioned Foster said a group of adults were celebrating New Year's Eve inside the apartment when a bullet was fired into the apartment from outside -- shattering a sliding glass door.

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(credit: CBSDFW.COM)

But after some investigation, and based on evidence inside the apartment, police say they were able to get to the truth.

The initial 911 call came from a witness who saw two adults carrying a bleeding child. Police later confirmed four adults took the little boy to a hospital in Grand Prairie.

Police say after the child was declared dead two of those adults returned to the apartment where officers went to speak with them. At some point the pair made a U-turn and tried to leave the complex, but the 911 caller pointed them out to police.

After questioning the two, and speaking with the adults who remained at the hospital, police developed a timeline of the events that they believe happened.

Investigators say four adults -- two men and two women -- were in the apartment ringing in the New Year, partying and dancing when Foster pulled out a gun and it went off.

The bullet hit the little boy, whose name has not been released, in the head. The exact relationship between the child and the adults isn't known.

Arlington police Lieutenant Chris Cook said shootings like this are senseless and preventable. "What makes this case so hard [is] number one -- it's a child. Number two -- it's preventable," he said. "It's so sad that we have these conversations each and every year, reminding folks don't discharge fire arms don't play with guns. It's a lot of responsibility when you own and possess a firearm."

Foster, 21, has been taken into custody and charged with manslaughter. He reportedly is maintaining that the shooting was an accident.


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