14-year old girl was accidentally shot by another child, says sheriff
Alexis Sky Pierson died after being shot by a gun that was believed to be unloaded, said Sheriff Adam.
HANCOCK COUNTY, Miss. (WLOX) - A 14-year-old girl who died Tuesday from a gunshot wanted to be TikTok famous and be the best friend, daughter and sister she could be. Those are the words her aunt wrote about her in a post that features some of the young girl’s social media videos.
Alexis Sky Pierson died after being shot by another child, said Hancock County Sheriff Ricky Adam on Wednesday. It happened at a duplex on East Madison Street in the Bayside Park community.
According to the sheriff, a 10-year-old and a 15-year-old who were next door walked over to hang out with the teen girl and her 10-year-old brother. The visitors reportedly brought two guns with them, and all four kids went into the bedroom.
The guns were on the bed when one of the kids picked one up around 8:30pm. Thinking it was empty, the sheriff said the youth pointed the gun toward Alexis and pulled the trigger. A bullet was discharged from the weapon, striking the girl just below her left eye. She died instantly.
The sheriff said the investigation has determined the shooting “was not intentional.” Nevertheless, the case will be presented to Hancock County Youth Court so it can be determined whether the facts should lead to any charges.
No adults are currently charged with crimes. However, there are underlying questions being asked, such as how the two children got access to the guns. Sheriff Adam said it’s too soon to tell if any future charges will be filed. That is part of the investigation, which is ongoing.
Kolby Sims said he’s been neighbors with Pierson for over three years and was with another neighbor outside during the shooting. He said they heard a loud thud and thought the children dropped something.
“He went upstairs to go tell them to calm down and all the kids just started running outside, Sims said. “It went downhill from there. They were all scared when they ran out.”
Sims said the neighborhood kids, including his younger brother, often play together. He said he was devastated once he found out it was a gunshot that caused the noise.
“It just made me sick to my stomach, especially so close to my little brother and me having a son of my own. It hits different,” said Sims.
Alexis’ great-grandmother Polly Boswell described the teen as an angel who loved her family and had the biggest heart.
“She’s been special since she was little. I can’t really describe what it was about her. It’s like she just shined with love. There was just something about her that you knew that she was special,” said Boswell. “She loved her family. She never hurt anyone, she was always encouraging everyone. She just loved her family so much and has really clung to family since she was little bitty.”
Alexis was part Choctaw and her native name was Sky Blue, said Boswell.
In addition to her mother and stepfather, Alexis is survived by an older brother, a younger brother and a baby sister, as well as numerous other loved ones.
Alexis, also known as Lexi, was a sixth grade student at Hancock Middle School. The school district released a statement Wednesday afternoon expressing their profound sadness.
“We extend our sympathy and prayers to the family during this difficult time,” the statement read. “Today, counselors, teachers and other support staff have been, and will continue to be, available to students, staff, and parents. How children react in these situations varies. Children may ask questions about death, be sad or afraid. We encourage parents to listen to their children and if they want to talk, answer his or her questions simply and honestly.”
As news spread throughout the community, people began mourning the loss of the young girl. Just hours after the shooting, Bayside Fire Department, which was one of the responding agencies, made a heartfelt post on Facebook, saying: “If anyone has kids, stop what your doing and go hug them tight right now. This family has been through the worst nightmare tonight. Keep them in your thoughts & prayers!”
Not long after, the department announced they would be raising money for the teen’s family and are currently seeking raffle items and taking monetary donations.
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