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11-year-old boy shot in the face in Abington home

The Abington home where officials said an 11-year-old-boy was shot in the face Wednesday.Barry Chin/Globe staff

ABINGTON — A shooting involving two young boys inside a home here Wednesday afternoon left one of them with severe facial injuries, but it appeared to be an accident, officials said.

The shooting occurred around 3:20 p.m. on Linwood Street, according to Plymouth District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz. The 11-year-old boy, who was shot in the face, was taken to South Shore Hospital and then rushed to a Boston hospital. He was in stable condition on Wednesday evening, Cruz told reporters at the scene.

Cruz described the incident as “a shooting as pertaining to two young boys” and said the weapon was a handgun. He did not provide additional details about how the child was shot.

He said investigators do not believe the boy was intentionally shot. Neither boy was identified.

“Obviously our thoughts and prayers go out to [the victim] and his family,” Cruz said. “. . . We’re hopeful that he’ll” recover.

Cruz said the handgun was legally owned, but he did not say who owned the weapon or how the boys got hold of it.

The shooting occurred at 159 Linwood St., and a neighbor said one boy lived in the house and the victim lived a few doors down.

Cruz declined to confirm that. “The police have a lot of work to do” to investigate, Cruz said. He did not say whether anyone would be charged criminally.

Abington school officials said the two boys attend Woodsdale School.

Superintendent Peter Schafer sent a note to parents on Wednesday night informing them of the shooting and saying counseling would be available to students.

He said the shooting was “heartbreaking and sad.”

The shooting occurred one day after Abington schools opened for a new year.

School Committee Chairwoman Kathleen Bailey said the boys have siblings at other schools in the district. Crisis teams will be present at all five Abington schools Thursday for counseling.

“We are very lucky that the schools and the police work very closely together and have a wonderful relationship,” she said. “It’s really important when you have a situation like this.”

Police remained at the two-story, beige-colored house late into Wednesday evening. Yellow crime scene tape sealed off the home, where two children’s bicycles were in the driveway.

Linwood Street is a main thoroughfare in town. The shooting startled and saddened neighbors.

Beverly McAuliffe, 79, said she heard police sirens and later saw the victim being placed into an ambulance.

“He was crying real hard,” she said. “And he was covered with blood.”

She said the victim lives about three houses down from the home where the shooting occurred. The other boy lives at 159 Linwood St. with his parents and two siblings, McAuliffe said.

She said she often sees the two boys playing baseball in the backyard of 159 Linwood.

“It’s sad,” McAuliffe said. “I’ve never seen anything like it in my life. I’m very upset about it.”

Elaine Comis, 67, said she was baby-sitting her grandson when the shooting happened.

“I saw the police car, the tape, the whole thing,” Comis said. “It’s really sad. You wonder what is wrong with people with guns in the house? Why don’t they make it safer? I don’t know.”

Comis added that on Linwood Street, the neighbors are all very close. The children on the street often play basketball and ride bikes together.

“It’s a nice neighborhood,” she said. “It’s just a tragic accident. It should have been avoided. Their lives all changed in an instant. My heart goes out to everyone. In these things, everyone loses.”

Police stand near the scene of the accidental shooting Wednesday evening.

Barry Chin/Globe staff

Police stand near the scene of the accidental shooting Wednesday evening.

Travis Andersen can be reached at Travis.Andersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe. Samantha J. Gross can be reached