A 5-year-old child outside New Orleans has died after authorities say his 9-year-old brother accidentally shot him in the head.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office Commander John Fortunato says in a statement that deputies responded Tuesday evening to a report of a child shot at a Marrero home.

Deputies found 5-year-old Melvin Brady in a bedroom closet with a gunshot wound to his head. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Fortunato says that according to a preliminary investigation, the victim and his 9-year-old brother were playing in the closet when the two discovered a handgun. As the older brother handled the handgun, it discharged once, striking the younger child.

At the time of the incident, the children were home alone. The boys' mother was across the street helping a neighbor.