by: KIRO 7 Staff Updated:
SEDRO-WOOLLEY, Wash. - A convicted felon who fled from a Sedro-Woolley house where a 4-year-old boy was shot and later died Sunday morning has surrendered to authorities, and police now say the boy's gunshot wound was self-inflicted after all.
Police had been looking for 25-year-old Trevor Braymiller, who was a father figure to the boy, but not his biological father. Braymiller is the boyfriend of the boy's mother.
Braymiller told other people in the Sedro-Woolley house at the time that the boy shot himself.
Authorities had originally said the shooting appeared to be nothing more than a tragic accident and said they believed the boy, identified as Dwayne Kerrigan, had been playing in a room alone when he got a hold of a family member’s gun and accidentally shot himself.
He was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
At that time, the coroner said it was impossible for the boy to have shot himself.
After the medical examiner’s office said the gunshot wound on the boy was not self-inflicted, officers began investigating the death as a homicide. But the results of an autopsy Monday proved that initial information to be wrong, and police said the boy did indeed die from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
To add to the confusion, police said Braymiller took off on foot with the weapon after the shooting for which he was believed to be responsible.
During the search Sunday afternoon, a K-9 unit with the Washington State Patrol found a gun believed to be used in the shooting, less than a block away at a church.
Authorities told KIRO 7 that Braymiller and the home where the boy was shot were known to police. Braymiller was arrested as part of a drug ring one and a half years ago. During that time at least one gun, his vehicle and money were confiscated. Because he is a convicted felon, Braymiller was not to have or be in the company of firearms.
Ashley Neff is friends with Braymiller and the boy's mother. She acknowledges the suspect has a criminal past, but she said he is not a dangerous or violent person.
"I just don't believe it was him at all. I don't think it was a murder at all," said Neff, who said she believed the shooting was accidental.
Braymiller called police Monday from the Big Lake area and made arrangements to turn himself in. He is in custody in Sedro-Woolley but will be transferred to the Skagit County Jail.