A 14-year-old has confessed to shooting and killing five members of his family in Alabama Monday night, sheriff's department officials said.

The Limestone County Sheriff's Department tweeted that five people were shot at a residence in Elkmont, a few miles south of the Tennessee border. Three died at the scene and two others were airlifted in critical condition.

The department tweeted again early Tuesday morning that the two critical patients had died and that the 14-year-old who initially called police confessed to the shooting. The child was assisting in helping deputies find the 9mm handgun used in the shooting.

Limestone County Sheriff's spokesman Stephen Young said the teenager initially told a dispatcher he was downstairs when he heard gunshots on the home's upper floor. The sheriff's office said investigators recovered a handgun that had been tossed along a nearby roadside.

WAFF-TV reports the victims are the boy's father, stepmother and his siblings, according to the sheriff. The boy reportedly claimed when he called police that he was downstairs and heard shooting upstairs.

"It's an absolutely terrible thing, and I can't wrap my arms around it," Elkmont Mayor Tracy Compton told The News Courier .

"Our heartfelt condolences are extended to the family, the school, the whole community. It's just unimaginable," said Compton, who lives near the house where the shootings happened.

Young told WHNT that the 14-year-old attended Elkmont High School. The small town is northwest of Huntsville, near the Tennessee line.

"Please be in prayer for our school and community. We will have extra counselors at school today," Elkmont High School tweeted.

A motive for the shooting was not immediately known.