Man who shot boy while cleaning rifle charged

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A bullet hole could be seen at an Oceanside complex.

OCEANSIDE — An Oceanside man whose rifle accidentally discharged while he was cleaning it, which sent a bullet through his apartment wall and into the hand of an 11-year-old boy playing on his skateboard, was facing charges Tuesday.

Martin Rockwell, 39, was arrested on suspicion of willful discharge of a firearm in a grossly negligent manner shortly before 9 p.m. Saturday, about an hour after the wounded boy was airlifted from the 400 block of Vandegrift Boulevard to Rady Children’s Hospital in Kearny Mesa, Oceanside police Officer Kathleen Vincent said.

Read More: Boy playing outside shot by man cleaning his rifle

The victim told officers he heard a loud pop while skateboarding near the apartment complex’s pool then felt the injury to his hand. He was subsequently treated for the non-life-threatening injury, Vincent said.

Rockwell allegedly told police he was unloading his .223 caliber rifle and accidentally fired a shot. Officers found a bullet hole in the exterior of the building near where children were playing.

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