Boy, 14, dies after air rifle shooting

A 14-year-old boy died after being shot in the head with an air rifle, police said today.

Matthew Sheffield, of Eaglescliffe, Teesside, was understood to have been playing in a back garden with friends on Sunday afternoon when the incident happened.

The teenager was taken to Middlesbrough General Hospital's intensive care unit but died on Monday afternoon, police said today.

Cleveland officers have arrested two juveniles who have since been released on police bail while inquiries continue.

A force spokesman said today: "There has been a number of serious incidents over the past few years with people being wounded through the use of air rifles.

"These are weapons that can kill as has been shown in this incident and extreme care must be taken in connection with their use."

The teenager's family have asked not to be contacted by the media as they deal with their grief, the spokesman added, and no officers were available today to speak to the press.

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