Cops: Boy, 14, may have accidentally shot, killed self

The 14-year-old boy killed inside a northwest Atlanta apartment may have accidentally shot himself, police said today.

Police were called to a small apartment building in the 400 block of Sunset Avenue around 5 p.m. Monday after a report of a person being shot, according to Capt. Paul Guerrucci. Officers arrived to find a teenage boy dead from a gunshot wound.

That boy was identified today by the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office as Mi’Tavius Smith, of Decatur.

Information about the weapon involved was not released.

“Before we actually determine the cause of death, that’s going to be a combination of working the scene and what the medical examiner has to say,” Guerrucci said.

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The Medical Examiner’s Office has not made a determination on how Mi’Tavius died, a spokeswoman said. But police said today that the preliminary indication is that he actually shot himself while holding a gun.

Two other people were in the two-story building at the time of the shooting and were cooperating with investigators, police said.

“The two witnesses stated that the victim discharged the firearm and fatally wounded himself,” Atlanta police said today in an emailed statement. “At this point in the investigation it appears that the victim shot himself. Further information is pending from the autopsy.”

The teenager was visiting family and friends at the time of the shooting, Guerrucci said.

Dozens of relatives, friends and neighbors gathered for hours near the intersection of Sunset Avenue and John Street, awaiting more details and consoling each other. A woman identified only as the teen’s mother arrived Monday night and was being comforted by others while being escorted to a patrol car.

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