The Liberty County Sheriff's Office has ruled the shooting death of an 8-year-old boy to be accidental.
Abel Rincon, 8, was shot in the chest on Saturday night, September 30, and later died after being life-flighted to a Houston hospital.
Investigators have interviewed family members who witnessed the incident and determined that Rincon reached for the .22 rifle and was pulling it toward himself when it went off striking him in the chest according to a release from the Liberty County Sheriff's Office.
The fact that the older model rifle did not have a trigger guard could have contributed to the accidental shooting according to the release.
No charges are being filed in the case and while being ruled as accidental it will still be forwarded to a Liberty County grand jury for review the release said.
According to the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, the fatal incident happened at 10 p.m. on County Road 3560 near the Plum Grove area.
Investigators said the father, 35-year-old Aaron Rincon, and his juvenile nephew along with Rincon’s 8-year-old son were using a very old .22 caliber semi-automatic rifle with no trigger guard to take turns shooting at tin cans near a wood pile.
From the initial investigation, Rincon told investigators that the rifle was being handled by someone and when he turned his back, he heard a gunshot and his son had been shot.
Rincon put his son in his truck and was rushing him to the hospital when he came upon Deputy Ben Garcia conducting a burglary investigation on County Road 3550.
Garcia called for an ambulance and Life Flight while rendering CPR to the small boy, investigators said. The child was flown to a local hospital in Houston where he was pronounced dead.