A BOY of 3 shot himself dead in the chest with his mum's handgun.
Detectives believe the toddler took the weapon from his mother's purse and shot himself accidentally while playing with it.
His hysterical mother had to be subdued by police as paramedics tried unsuccessfully to revive the tot at the bottom of steps to the family's front door.
The victim was later identified as Marques Green. Detectives said no one else was involved in the shooting.
Neighbours told local station WCPO they heard Marques' devastated mum Elizabeth Green screaming: "My baby's shot himself' when she discovered her lifeless son.
In her 911 call Ms Green is heard to say: “My son just shot himself, oh my God, oh my God … he’s shot in the heart.
"I don’t know if he is alive.
"Stay with me, stay with me."
She tells the operator: "The gun is mine. It is in the house, I carry it in my purse, I laid it down.
"We just got home."
Green tells the operator she was washing dishes in the sink when she heard the gunshot.
Marques was shot at just before 4pm yesterday in Hamilton, a town near Cincinnati, Ohio, in the United States.
Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser said the incident will be presented to a grand jury to determine whether more action should be taken.
Family members said Green is terribly distraught and they are trying to help her through this.
It’s unclear why Green had a loaded gun in her purse but neighbour Leonard Angel said crime in the neighbourhood is "bad".
The accident happened the same day a 16-year-old was arraigned in connection with the shooting death of his 14-year-old friend.
Hamilton Police said the two boys were playing with a gun when it went off, sending a bullet into the 14-year-old's head. He later died.
The 16-year-old has been charged with reckless homicide, assault, tampering with evidence and discharging a firearm within city limits.