Owner: Gun that killed boy was hidden, unloaded - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Owner: Gun that killed boy was hidden, unloaded

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The father of the little girl who was with 10-year-old Eric Klyaz when he died from a gunshot wound is speaking out.

The boy was shot in the torso while playing with a gun at a neighbor's home in Scripps Ranch. The man who lives there issued a statement Friday.

Todd Francis, the brother of former San Diego mayoral candidate Steve Francis, says he is devasted. In a statement released Friday, Francis says:

"The weapon was purchased lawfully, and was registered, and was not loaded and was hidden in a separate location from the ammunition."

The Dingeman Elementary student and Francis's nine-year-old daughter were playing with the 9mm pistol in the garage of the girl's condominium. The gun went off, striking the 4th grader in the torso. Klyaz later died at the hospital.

"They happened upon a loaded firearm and as they were handling the firearm the firearm discharged," San Diego Police Dept. Lt. Jorge Duran said.

Francis' statement continues:

"Neither the gun nor the clip were immediately accessible to children and were hidden separately from home security."

No one else was in the garage at the time. No adults were home either. The girl was left under the care her 14-year-old brother.

Francis, who has not charged in the case, says he's been in ongoing communication with law enforcement and says:

"It has been a horrific, life-changing incident for many people that unfortunately cannot be reversed."

No charges have been filed in this case. News 8 asked Francis' attorney Danna Cotman how the gun may have been loaded. She declined to comment.

The investigation is ongoing. So far police have not said who actually pulled the trigger inside that garage.

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