By Associated Press - Wednesday, June 7, 2017

HELENA-WEST HELENA, Ark. (AP) - Police say a 4-year-old boy accidentally fatally shot his mother’s boyfriend in eastern Arkansas.

Police Chief James Smith said the boy found a loaded semi-automatic handgun outside his mother’s home in Helena-West Helena and shot Courtney Craig in the back on Friday. The 29-year-old man was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Police questioned the child’s mother, but she was not arrested. The boy is in the custody of a family member.

Police say three men, including the boy’s uncle, hid the firearm, fearing the boy could be charged or removed from the home by the state. Police recovered the weapon. The three men have been charged with tampering with evidence and two of them face additional weapons charges.

Helena-West Helena is about 70 miles (110 kilometers) southwest of Memphis, Tennessee.

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