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Portsmouth police say child accidentally shot self in Midtown area

Officials said the child, who was shot on Harvard Road, was taken to the hospital and is expected to be okay.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Portsmouth Police Department said a Wednesday afternoon shooting was an accident.

Officials said they responded to the 40 block of Harvard Road around 4:30 p.m. When they got there, they found a boy who had been shot. 

By Thursday morning, the police department said the boy was 15 years old, and had apparently accidentally shot himself.

Police said he's expected to be okay.

This boy was the sixth juvenile shot since the beginning of October.

The owner of a property in the area says her 16-year-old daughter was home when she heard the gunshots.

"She was woken up from a dead sleep," she said. "I literally got a phone call, pulled up that somebody got shot, so walked into it a little bit blindsided."

The woman did not want to talk to us on camera, or give her name, but did tell us she’s not sure exactly what happened outside of her home or who the boy is, but she’s relieved her whole family is okay.

"I never thought in a million years this would happen," she said. "Police activity isn’t unusual, but this incident is definitely out of the ordinary."

This is just the latest scene of gun violence in Portsmouth.

Since October 1, a teen was killed on Berkley Avenue, a 16-year-old was killed on South Street and another was injured.

Another teen was injured on Dale Drive and a 17-year-old was killed on Elm Avenue.

And on Monday, The Portsmouth Police Department said officers stopped a student from bringing a gun to I.C. Norcom High School.

"We’re going as if it’s normal and it shouldn’t be normal," said Portsmouth Vice-Mayor De'Andre Barnes. "I grew up in a neighborhood called Dale Homes and it was very bad out there when I was growing up, but nothing like what is it now."

He says the city needs to put more resources and emphasis on youth programs.

"We haven’t put any policies in place, we haven’t done anything for our children for years and it’s what you have now is what you’ve been given."

This has been an ongoing problem all year. Even before October 1, eight juveniles had already been shot.