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Vigil Held For Teen Victim Of Accidental Shooting

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Michael Brooks
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Derek Valcourt began working at WJZ in September 2002. His first major...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)— Fatal mistake. Two families in disbelief after an 11 year old accidentally kills his friend. The teen victim is remembered, as police release details of their investigation.

Derek Valcourt spoke with the victim’s family members at an emotional vigil.

The teen was killed as his friends played with a gun inside a South Baltimore home. Police are trying to figure out if anyone will face charges in the case.

Tears and prayers flowed for 15-year-old Michael Brooks at candle light vigil just feet away from the Cherry Hill home where he was shot to death by an 11 year old playing with a handgun.

His large extended family is in grief.

“He’s a very good kid. He did not deserve this,” said Kay Horn, victim’s aunt.

His twin sister is devastated.

“I love him so much,” said Vanessa Brooks. “I can’t even explain it in words.”

Especially painful for his younger brother Jeremiah, who was there when his brother was shot in the head Saturday inside a home in the 2400 block of Seamon Avenue. The homeowner who would not be interviewed on camera says his handgun was locked inside his bedroom while his 11-year-old nephew was having a sleepover party.

 He says the boys unlocked the door and took his gun, loaded it and that’s when he says his nephew accidently shot and killed Michael Brooks.

The story is too frustrating for those who loved the victim.

“It shouldn’t have happened,” said Robert Horn, the victim’s great uncle. “It should have been in a lock box if it’s their gun or whatever. Someone needs to be responsible for this.”

“It should have been out of the reach of the child,” said John Gallano, friend of the victim.

“We put this cross here to know that he is going to be remembered in this community,” said Kimberly Orellana, victim’s family friend who organized the vigil.

Friends, family and neighbors paid tribute with stuffed animals and notes left at a make-shift memorial.

Many there are hoping others can learn a lesson from Michael’s tragic death.

“Any parent out there that has a gun that ain’t locked up ought to have their head examined,” said Charles Horn, victim’s uncle.

The family needs help covering the cost of Michael’s funeral. Donations for the Michael Brooks fund can be sent to the Bailey Funeral Home on Annapolis Road in Halethorpe.

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