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Story highlights

A 1-year-old died after being shot in the face

Police say a 3-year-old may have pulled the trigger

CNN —  

A 1-year-old child was shot and killed Sunday, possibly by a toddler, after a firearm was left unattended, authorities in Cleveland said.

Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams told CNN affiliate WEWS that several other children and at least one adult were in the house at the time of the shooting.

Preliminary information indicates a 3-year-old pulled the trigger, he said, but authorities are still investigating.

“It’s a sad day for Cleveland,” said Williams. “Currently we’re investigating where this firearm came from. We’re also investigating how this tragedy actually happened.”

The baby’s mother was in the room with her child and two other relatives (a 3-year-old and another 1-year-old) and facing away from the children when she heard a single gunshot, Cleveland Police said Monday.

The mother saw the baby on the floor bleeding, and a handgun was ground near where the 3-year-old relative had been standing, police said.

The other two children were not injured and were released to their mother.

According to Cleveland Emergency Medical Service Capt. Michael Threat, the baby was shot in the face.

“This fascination that we have with handguns – not just in the city but in this country – has to stop. This is a senseless loss of life,” the police chief said.