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5-year-old boy accidentally shoots and kills his 8-year-old brother, Arkansas sheriff says

"I can’t emphasize strongly enough that guns need to be well secured and kept out of the hands and away from children at all times," Jefferson County Sheriff Lafayette Woods Jr. said.

A 5-year-old boy accidentally shot and killed his 8-year-old brother, authorities in Arkansas said, reminding gun owners of the importance of keeping weapons securely locked away.

The shooting happened Thursday afternoon at a home on Shannon Valley Road in Jefferson County.

Deputies responding to a 911 call found the 8-year-old unresponsive at the home, according to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office. The boy later died at the scene.

The shooting is believed to be accidental, the sheriff's office said in a news release. Sheriff Lafayette Woods Jr. called the shooting a tragedy that could have been avoided.

"I can’t emphasize strongly enough that guns need to be well secured and kept out of the hands and away from children at all times. Gun owners that do not properly secure their firearms are just one split second away from one of these tragedies happening in their home," he said in a statement.

The names of the children have not been released.