News 4 Jacksonville reports
that Titania Mitchell, 13, was found dead in a home on Jacksonville's Northside shortly after 3 p.m. on Saturday.
According to Lt. Rob Schoonover of the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, officers were called to the home in the 11300 block of Riverstone Way to investigate the incident. Schoonover told reporters that five children, ages 1-13, were in the home without adult supervision at the time Mitchell was shot. Police believe the shooting was accidental and have taken the four surviving children in for questioning to determine exactly how the teen was shot.
"We're still in the preliminary stages of taking the kids downtown," Schoonover is quoted
in the Florida Times-Union
. "We're going to talk to each one of them, get their story."
Schoonover said investigating a case such as this is difficult because of the young age of the witnesses.
"It makes it very difficult. Just imagine what the kids have just experienced or saw," he said. "So they are traumatic and now we have to go in and talk to them and find out what occurred."
Julianne Williams, the slain girl's mother, was distraught after learning what happened to her daughter.
"She came to spend the night; got a phone call... my baby girl's gone," she told News 4 Jacksonville.
Williams said Mitchell was a student at LaVilla School of the Arts, a public magnet school in downtown Jacksonville.
If Mitchell's death is determined to be the result of an accident, it will be added to a growing list of people who have died from accidental shootings across America in recent weeks.
On Saturday, 7-year-old Gavin Brummett
of Salina, Kansas died a day after accidentally shooting himself with a .9mm handgun while shooting with his father and brothers.
On April 8, 6-year-old Brandon Holt
of Toms River, New Jersey died after being accidentally shot in the head by his 4-year-old neighbor and playmate.
Two days earlier, Josephine Fanning
, 48, the wife of a Wilson County, Tennessee sheriff's deputy, was shot dead by her 4-year-old nephew during a family cookout.
On March 30, 4-year-old Rahquel Carr
died after being shot while sitting in a car in the driveway of her grandparent's Northwest Miami-Dade home.