No charges in South Albany child gun death - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

No charges in South Albany child gun death

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By Jim Wallace - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –The Dougherty District Attorney decides not to file any criminal charges in last week's shooting death of a 13-year old Albany girl in her home.

Neither her parents, nor her 15-year old brother who fired the fatal shot, will be charged.

Instead the D-A's office arranged for counseling to help the family through their grief.

The Dougherty County Child Death team, made up of officers from all the law enforcement agencies in the county, has concluded their investigation into the death of Love Lunsford. District Attorney Greg Edwards said her death has been ruled a tragic accident.

13 year old Love Lunsford died from a gunshot wound to the neck December 7th. Investigators say she and several relatives were playing in the living room when her 15 year old brother, who has a mental disability, got his father's rifle and fired it once, despite the trigger lock on the weapon.

District Attorney Greg Edwards said "there was a sincere effort to make the weapon safe, but the mechanism that was used didn't quite fit this particular weapon."

Love Lunsford's father today said his family is dealing with this tragedy one day at a time, and is relieved his son will not face any criminal charges.

Thomas Lunsford said "We're real glad about that, because it could have been a whole lot worse."

 Edwards said "There was no intent. We've reviewed his circumstances. He was a student at Monroe, and there was nothing to indicate anything other than an accident."

The District Attorney's office, Department of Family and Children's Services, and the Lily Pad have offered the Lunsford's counseling services.

Thomas Lunsford said dozens of people in the community stepped forward to help them, many he doesn't even know.

Lunsford said "We'd like to thank everybody. Those who don't get thank you cards out, it's because we don't know how to get in touch with you. But we really appreciate the community's help."

Love Lunsford was an outstanding student and athlete. Her teachers and classmates said she got her nickname because she was a loving young lady, who died in what has been ruled a tragic gun accident.

Love's funeral was held Tuesday afternoon.

Thomas Lunsford said he and his family have become closer through this tragedy, with all their friends and family help and support really making a difference.

The District Attorney said with kids spending more time at home during the holidays,  it's a good time to check all your guns and make sure they are locked and safeguarded to prevent any other tragedies.

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