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3-Year-Old Fatally Shoots 1-Year-Old Sister — and Man Accused of Leaving Gun on Bed Is Charged

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A 1-year-old is dead after police in Memphis, Tennessee, say a 3-year-old sibling picked up and fired a handgun left on a bed by a 25-year-old man who is now facing charges, PEOPLE confirms.

Shawn Moore, the 25-year-old, was arrested Friday on charges of criminally negligent homicide, tampering with evidence and being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, Memphis Police say.

“She was a sweet baby,” said Wanda Keefer, the aunt of shooting victim Robbin Keefer, reports local TV station WREG. “She was always smiling. Never cried too much unless she was hungry.”

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Police who responded to the shooting at 7:15 a.m. Friday say they arrived to find Robbin Keefer injured. She was taken in critical condition to a local hospital, where she later died.

“The investigation revealed that Keefer was placed in the bed and Shawn Moore also laid his firearm on that bed,” police alleged in a statement. “Witnesses then heard a gunshot and noticed the victim had been hit. Shawn Moore took the weapon and fled the scene.”

Memphis Police Department

Moore later turned himself in, according to police, who determined that Robbin Keefer was actually shot by her 3-year-old sibling with Moore’s firearm.

The victim’s mother earlier asked Moore why he had the firearm, and he answered that he needed it to protect himself, reports the Commercial Appeal. She said that she laid her daughter down on the bed while Moore was sitting on the side of it, but only heard the gunshot later and did not know who had fired the weapon.

Moore was booked in jail Friday with no bond set for his release, and scheduled to appear in court today. It could not be determined if he has an attorney to represent him.