SAVANNAH, GA (December 14, 2021) – Savannah Police detectives have preliminarily determined that a Dec. 5 shooting on E. 64th Street was the result of an accidental shooting by a young child.

Officers responded to the 100 block of E. 64th Street around 5:30 p.m. for a shooting and discovered Dustin Walters, 25, with a gunshot wound. He was transported to Memorial Medical Center, where he died as a result of his injuries.

The preliminary investigation determined that Walters was wounded when a toddler, who was just under 2 years of age, found and fired the handgun, striking Walters.

“We grieve along with the Walters family,” Chief Roy Minter said. “As a parent, I cannot imagine what this family is going through or will continue to go through in the coming years. What we want to make sure now is that parents are aware that although rare, these incidents can happen with tragic results. Please take this seriously and take the steps to ensure that you and your family members are safe.”

The Savannah Police Department asks that the public give the Walters family privacy as they continue to grieve the tragic loss.

The Savannah Police Department is asking the public to please take a moment to think about the firearms in their homes and in any homes that their children frequent. Make sure those firearms are secured and not accessible by children. If your children frequent a home where there are firearms, have a conversation with those people to make sure that firearms are secured and not accessible. If your child is old enough, have a conversation about the dangers of firearms and advise the child to never touch a firearm. Also, tell the child to notify an adult know if they find a gun. However, experts advise that adults should acknowledge that children are curious and they should not rely on these conversations alone to be a deterrent.

The Savannah Police Department has gun locks that are free to the public and can be picked up from headquarters or any precinct location.