GAFFNEY, SC (WSPA) – Four-year-old Tyjaylen Stevenson is in critical condition at Greenville Memorial Children’s Hospital after being shot over the weekend.
It’s being called an accident, but Stacy Hugh Johnson is out on bond and facing a charge of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Johnson is the boyfriend of a family member.
The child’s family says Tyjaylen found that gun under a mattress.
Tyjaylen had his second surgery on Monday afternoon. His family is praying for a full recovery.
His mother, who is seven months pregnant, is also in the hospital.
Family members describe Tyjaylen as a happy, joyful little boy.
They are praying for a full recovery.
“He lost a kidney. The bullet travel down through several different organs so it came out his back. It’s going to be a long process, he’s a baby,” says Tyjaylen’s aunt Tracey Stevenson Manning. “He’s just four.”
Police say the shooting was an accident.
Ty’s aunt and father provided an update about the child’s condition and how events turned for the worst last Saturday.
“The guy had the had the gun under a mattress. That’s too easy,” says Manning. “That’s easy access to a child. They’re already sitting on the floor playing ball is rolling. Something as simple as that, a child sees it sticking out. It should be put away in a safe locked place.”
“Lock your guns. Put them up. If you got a box put them in it. By the sea box. Keep them where the kids are not able to get them,” says Manning.
The Cherokee County Detention Center says Johnson is out on bond. However, when he was arrested he was also charged with hit-and-run with property damage and use of a vehicle without the permission of the owner.
We are working to find out if those charges are connected to the shooting of 4-year-old Tyjaylen.