Uncle arrested after allegedly killing 2-year-old niece in Maine town during family fight

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A 19-year-old man is accused of shooting and killing his 2-year-old niece during a family fight in a small Maine town, authorities said.

Andrew Huber-Young, 19, was charged with murder of 2-year-old Octavia Jean Huber-Young after he allegedly opened fire at a family home in Wells, the Maine State Police said.

Authorities said that Mr Huber-Young turned himself into Maine State Police Detectives after the Sunday afternoon shooting that left his 2-year-old niece dead and two adult men with non-life-threatening injuries.

The toddler was similarly rushed to hospital following the Sunday shooting but succumbed to her injuries while being treated. An autopsy, police said, will be conducted in the coming days.

While police said in their press release that the accused gunman was related to the victims, they said they would not be identifying the two men shot during the altercation.

Octavia Jean Huber-Young, 2, was allegedly killed by her uncle, Andrew Huber-Young, in a tragic shooting in Maine. (ABC 13/video screengrab)
Octavia Jean Huber-Young, 2, was allegedly killed by her uncle, Andrew Huber-Young, in a tragic shooting in Maine. (ABC 13/video screengrab)

The deceased 2-year-old’s other uncle, Craig Higgins, however confirmed to WMTW that the two other victims were the girl’s father and grandfather.

Neighbours reportedly heard a scream coming from the residential home in Wells, a small resort town located approximately 85 miles southwest of the state capital of Augusta.

One witness told CBS13 that a man’s voice could be heard shouting before the gunshots went off.

The toddler, as described by her uncle Craig Higgins to WMTW, was just learning how to speak and would’ve been celebrating her second birthday this coming July.

“She was the sweetest. A happy go lucky kid,” he told the news outlet.

Octavia’s mother, Samantha Higgins, was reportedly working at the time of the shooting at a nearby nursing job, the Press Herald reported.

Andrew Huber-Young, 19, has been arrested and charged with murdering his 2-year-old niece during a family fight in a small town in Maine. (York County Jail)
Andrew Huber-Young, 19, has been arrested and charged with murdering his 2-year-old niece during a family fight in a small town in Maine. (York County Jail)

“All I know is she was full of life and she always loved to smile and play. She always wanted to be like her older sister,” said Ms Higgins told WGME in an interview. “She would always when she wanted my attention, she would always grab my finger and bring me toward her room and play with her. And she always loved to go outside and play on her swing set.”

Ms Higgins and Octavia’s father, Ethan Huber Young, are reportedly separated and their daughter was staying with her father at the time of the shooting.

Octavia’s other uncle, Craig Higgins, told the Press Herald that the alleged shooting incident all spurred from a fight between the accused gunman and his parents, who he says were kicking him out of the family home.

When Andrew left following the news, he allegedly returned with “a gun and started shooting”, the local news outlet quoted Mr Higgins as saying.

The 19-year-old allegedly then shot Octavia’s grandfather in the face and then proceeded to shoot his brother, Ethan, who was holding the baby in his arms, “once in one arm and once in his shoulder”.

In a Facebook post, Craig Higgins commemorated his lost niece describing how the young girl and thanked the community for their outpouring of support.

“Octavia was such a precious little girl,” he wrote. “A piece of me died with her today. I have lost all faith in humanity. There is just too much hatred and not enough love in the world.”

The accused gunman is being detained in York County Jail and is being held without bail, local authorities reported.

The Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit is continuing to investigate the shooting and murder and “it is expected that Andrew Huber Young will face additional charges as the investigation proceeds,” the force said.

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