Chief Foiey: Toddler death case to take time

By Joe Gorman


Police Chief Rod Foley said Tuesday it may take a while before police can determine how a 3-year-old died from a gunshot wound late Sunday in his grandmother’s North Side apartment.

Foley said that besides gunshot-residue tests done on everyone in the apartment where Raytwon Briggs was killed, police also are having the three loaded handguns that were found in the apartment checked by the federal government to see if their ownership and point of ownership can be tracked. That can take time, Foley said.

The Mahoning County Coroner’s office is waiting for an investigation to decide if Raytwon’s death was accidental or a homicide.

Foley also said police are not yet sure who fired the fatal shot. He said there was at least one other child in the room with Raytwon when he died. There also was a 1-year-old in the apartment, but Foley would not say where that child was.

Foley said investigators are working under the theory that the child’s death was an accident.

Detectives have been interviewing several people, Foley said. He said police think the guns belonged to a male relative of Raytwon’s, but they still are not sure.

He said the federal checks likely will be able to determine who were the original owners of the guns, but if those guns were sold informally, it would be hard to trace their path after the initial sale.

Police were called to the apartment just before 11 p.m. by Raytwon’s grandmother, who said her grandson had shot himself while he was playing with a gun.

The coroner’s office said the boy died within seconds from a gunshot wound to the head.

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