SANTAQUIN — A 15-year-old boy was shot and killed earlier this month in what officers are calling a tragic accident, police confirmed Friday.
Deryk Lowe was shot inside his home about 9:30 p.m. on Oct. 7. A 23-year-old brother had just taken his 9mm handgun out of a backpack believing it was unloaded, while Deryk was standing in the doorway of his room, according to Santaquin police.
The brother said he turned "with the gun in his right hand and bumped his right hand with his left hand, thus discharging the handgun," according to a search warrant affidavit unsealed Friday in 4th District Court.
The brother immediately took off his shirt and used it to apply pressure to Deryk's wound while giving him CPR, the warrant states. Deryk was transported to a local hospital where he later died from his injuries.
A memorial fund was set up by McMullin Orchards in Payson, where Deryk's father works.
"The Lowe family has had a horrifying tragic accident," according to the fund. "This past summer many got to work side by side with young Deryk and see his sweet helping personality. We would like to try and help them out in this heartbreaking time with this unexpected tragedy to ease the financial burden that may come in any expenses."
Funeral services for Deryk were held Oct. 14.
"Deryk was a free spirit that absolutely loved and cherished life. His infectious smile would light up any room or area he was in," according to his obituary. "His short 15 years were completely filled with excitement and fun. It was abounding in selfless service and full of love."
His family said Deryk enjoyed track and field and running, being outdoors, camping, fishing, "and having adventures with his family and friends," according to the obituary.Comment on this story
"Although our hearts are breaking, we take comfort in knowing where his is now. We know that he is safe and happy. We are so very thankful and extremely blessed to know that families are forever and that we will be reunited with him soon," the obituary continued. "Deryk was and is the very definition of a spiritual giant. We love and miss you."
Police said Friday they had completed their investigation into the incident and would be turning their case over to the Utah County Attorney's Office to determine what, if any, charges to file.