Upon further investigation, authorities learned the mother, Shirley Bass, tucked the two children into bed, and while she was in the bathroom, she heard gunshots, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
The woman’s husband, Jermaine Bass, reportedly ran outside while holding their 8-year-old son, who sustained gunshot wounds to the head.
Upon deputies’ arrival, Bass allegedly told them the shooting was an accident.
Deputies found the 5-year-old girl upstairs in her bed, also with gunshot wounds to the head, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
The Sheriff’s Office said the 5-year-old girl was pronounced dead at the hospital, and the 8-year-old boy is currently in critical condition.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Bass was charged with first-degree premeditated murder with a firearm, first-degree premeditated attempted murder with a firearm, and aggravated child abuse.
In a statement, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said, "This is a horrific experience no parent should have to go through. This is an experience no law enforcement or first responder should ever have to witness. We as a sheriff’s office are struggling today. I hope that this individual feels the full weight of the criminal justice system and never sees the light of day where he can ever be in a position to harm another human being."
Earlier this summer, on June 8, Bass reportedly filed for divorce from his wife, but the petition for divorce was dropped on June 16.