5-year-old killed 7-year-old brother after finding gun while looking for Easter candy, family says

Posted at 4:27 PM, Apr 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-02 16:27:49-04

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - A 7-year-old boy died Saturday after his younger brother shot him with a gun they found while hunting for Easter candy, his family told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Jermon Perry, a 7-year-old who was shot in the head around 2 p.m. in the 3100 block of California Ave.  in south St. Louis, police said. He died late Saturday night.

Detectives say Perry and his brothers were on the second floor of their home and their parents were downstairs when one of the boys retrieved a gun from another room.

Police say the three children were playing and somehow the gun accidentally went off.  According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, the family believes Jermon's younger brother accidentally shot him while he sat in a chair while playing a video game.

Jermon's mother, Michelle Lawson, was too devastated to speak with reporters, but her god-sister, Erica Jones, told the paper Jermon's brother may have thought the gun was a toy.

“(Jermon's father) never thought the kids would get to the gun,” Jones told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “They were in a upstairs bedroom and their mother was in the kitchen cooking. She normally hides candy from them so they don’t go in there and eat it all.”

The paper also reports that the gun belongs to Jermon's father, Jericho Perry, who did have a license to carry.

Firefighters told KTVI that the child was barely conscious and breathing when they arrived on the scene. Perry was transported to the hospital where he later died.

Police say that homicide detectives are working on this case. Investigators are trying to figure out who was taking care of the kids, who the gun belongs to, and how the kids accessed the gun.