DETROIT (WWJ) – Police are investigating after an 11-year-old child shot himself in the butt while playing with a gun in southwest Detroit.

The shooting happened Thursday morning at an upstairs apartment flat on Vernor Highway near West Grand Boulevard.

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According to police, the boy was inside the home when a rifle went off. He was home alone without adult supervision, according to police.

“His dad left for work this morning and he was left by himself, is the information we got, and the rifle was left,” Detroit Police Capt. Whitney Walton told WWJ’s Mike Campbell. “The child was aware the rifle was there.”

Other circumstances weren’t immediately clear, including how the boy had access to the gun.

Police are now questioning the boy’s father, who returned home after being notified of the shooting. Walton said investigators are also looking into claims that the father purposely gave his son the weapon to protect himself.

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“There’s some information, preliminary, that he did make a statement to that effect, but we’re looking into that,” she said. “Child abuse is going to interview the son and the father and determine what validity there is to that.”

The father and son just recently moved to the area from California, according to reports.

The boy was last reported in stable condition at a local hospital.

An investigation is ongoing.

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