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Mom Arrested After Boy Accidentally Shoots, Kills 4-Year-Old Brother In East Orange

EAST ORANGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A New Jersey mother has been arrested after officials said a 6-year-old boy accidentally shot and killed his 4-year-old brother.

It happened on the front porch of a yellow single-family home at 112 Norman Street in East Orange just after 11 a.m. Saturday, CBS2's Brian Conybeare reported.

Officials said the older boy was playing with his mother's gun when he accidentally shot his younger brother in the head. The child was taken to University Hospital in Newark, where he was pronounced dead at 4:25 p.m., a hospital spokesperson said.

The victim's mother, 22-year-old Itiyanah Spruill, was arrested Saturday afternoon and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and a weapons violation. She is being held on $310,000 bail.

"This is a terribly unfortunate incident," Mayor Lester E. Taylor III said in a statement released earlier Saturday. "Our thoughts are with him and his family."

Neighbors were stunned.

"All I heard was the family next door saying, 'call the ambulance!' That's what woke me up out of my sleep," one neighbor said, adding that the family had moved in to the home about six months ago. The house is a rental, 1010 WINS' Carol D'Auria reported.

"This is crazy," neighbor Vania Limage said. "That's been going on in the news over and over where you hear about those incidents going on. So people should not have a gun around a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old."

"I don't understand, why would you have a loaded gun in your house anyway and have kids? If you do have a firearm you need to have it in a lockbox," one neighbor told D'Auria.

It was not immediately known how the child got the gun.

The investigation is ongoing.

The boys' names have not been released.

People inside the home did not comment.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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