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Babysitter charged after child killed in her home

Posted at 10:26 AM, May 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-23 19:24:57-04

ORANGE COUNTY, Va. -- An Orange County couple was arrested and charged in connection to the death of a child killed inside their home.

The sheriff’s office received a 911 call at approximately 12:45 p.m. on Monday, May 15, that a four-year-old child had somehow gotten a hold of a gun and shot himself.

The child, Cole James Clark, was one of several children at a babysitter's home on Cecelia Lane in Orange.

Heather Massey, 27, and Nicholas J. Stoia, 25, were charged with multiple counts of Child Abuse/Neglect and Reckless Handling/Leave Loaded Firearm Endangering Child under the age of 14.

Stoia, who was not home at the time, was a Stafford County Sheriff’s Office recruit, according to officials.

The gun involved in the incident was not a service weapon, investigators added.

Both Massey and Stoia were booked at Central Va. Regional Jail without bond.

A GoFundMe account set-up to help Cole's family has swelled to more than $24,000.

"We are so thankful for all the love and support you all have shown," Cole's Kyrin posted online. "Our son is smiling down at every one of you and he is leaving this earth for a better place, as the royal prince he is. He will never be forgotten and his smile will continue to brighten anyone's day when you think of him. Thank you all so much!"

This is a developing story. Updates will be provided online and the CBS 6 News at 5.