SAN DIEGO (CBS8/CNS) - Crisis counselors were on hand Wednesday at Dingeman Elementary School to help students grapple with the death of one of their classmates, a fourth-grader who apparently was shot accidentally while playing with a handgun at a neighbor's home.
A resident who heard a gunshot shortly before 4:30 p.m. Tuesday found 10-year-old Eric Klyaz lying in the fetal position near a distraught friend in a garage at a condominium complex in the 10900 block of Ivy Hill Drive in Scripps Ranch, according to San Diego police.
Medics took the boy to Rady Children's Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Preliminary evidence suggested that Eric and a 9-year-old girl were playing when they found a pistol and began handling it, SDPD Lt. Jorge Duran said. The 9 mm weapon then went off, wounding the boy in the chest.
Authorities have not disclosed who pulled the trigger, who owns the firearm, or whether criminal charges will be filed over the fatal shooting.
The parents of the 9-year-old playmate, who live in the home where the shooting took place, where identified by neighbors as Susan and Todd Francis.
News 8 has learned Todd Francis is the brother of former San Diego mayoral candidate Steve Francis of Rancho Santa Fe. Neighbors said Todd Francis is a former TSA employee who recently moved back to San Diego from Las Vegas.
San Diego Unified School District officials sent its crisis-response team to the victim's Scripps Creek Drive school Wednesday morning to help students talk through their shock and grief over his death, SDUSD spokesman Jack Brandais said.