Teen seriously hurt while firing pumpkins at church Halloween event

A Hall County teenager is in critical condition after suffering an injury at a church event on Halloween, according to multiple reports.

Oakwood police responded to the Cornerstone Assembly church on Atlanta Highway about 8:45 p.m. Wednesday, according to information on Facebook.

When officers arrived, they found a 16-year-old boy who had been seriously hurt while firing pumpkins from a “pumpkin chuckin' machine," according to Sgt. Todd Templeton.

Medical crews took the boy, identified as Jacob Stevens, to Northeast Georgia Medical Center. 

The device Stevens used is like a large slingshot, according to reports, used to fire pumpkins into wooded areas. Hall County Fire Services Capt. Zachary Brackett said the pumpkin that Stevens tried to shoot did not release properly and hit him in the chest.

Stevens’ lungs are “still in need of significant improvement,” according to the church’s Facebook page Friday afternoon. “He vomited during the trauma event and then because he was incapacitated it went down into his lungs. This has caused them to be in a ‘pneumonia’-like state due to internal burning from acid. 

“It could take up to two weeks for the healing process to progress to a satisfactory state.”


Trevor Stevens, Jacob’s brother, also issued an update Friday via the church Facebook page.

“Jacob was placed on an artificial lung machine, to which he is doing really well with,” he said. “So well in fact that they woke him up for a little bit and he opened his eyes and he squeezed the (doctor’s) hand. And was responsive to small commands. He is currently sedated again to allow him to rest.”

GoFundMe page has been set up to benefit Stevens’ family.

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