A 6-year-old boy shot and wounded his teacher at Richneck Elementary School in Newport News, Virginia.

According to local police, this was not an accidental shooting, and the boy has been taken into custody. The shooting took place on Friday following an altercation between the teacher and the student.

The teacher, who is in her 30s, received life-threatening injuries and is undergoing treatment at a hospital. The teacher is said to be in stable condition. According to Police Chief Steve Drew, the boy had a handgun with him, and the authorities are trying to figure out how he managed to obtain it.

"The individual is a 6-year-old student. We have been in contact with our commonwealth attorney and some other entities to help us best get services to this young man," Drew said at a press conference.

"We'll get the investigation done, there's questions we'll want to ask and find out about. I want to know where that firearm came from, what was the situation," he added.

Meanwhile, the police have taken the boy into custody. And the school will be closed on Monday and Tuesday.

In a similar incident reported from Michigan in 2000, a 6-year-old boy shot his 6-year-old classmate to death after a scuffle on the playground. The incident occurred inside Buell Elementary near Flint, per The Associated Press.

In the United States, firearms are involved in approximately 40,000 deaths a year, including suicides, according to the Gun Violence Archive website.

Lax gun laws and a constitutionally guaranteed right to bear arms have repeatedly stymied attempts to clamp down on the number of weapons in circulation, despite greater controls being favoured by most Americans.

Three-quarters of all homicides in the US are committed with guns, and the number of pistols, revolvers and other firearms sold continues to rise. According to a Pew survey conducted in June 2021, 30 percent of American adults said they owned at least one gun.

Crime Scene
Crime scene police line | Representational Image Photo: GETTY IMAGES / SCOTT OLSON GETTY IMAGES/SCOTT OLSON