VINALHAVEN, Maine — An 8-year-old Vinalhaven boy was treated and released from Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor after he was struck by a deflected .22-caliber bullet Sunday afternoon.

The 8-year-old boy was target practicing with his 10-year-old and 13-year-old friends at his home in Vinalhaven at about 2:45 p.m. Jan. 8 they decided to switch from shooting targets and try to shoot at a squirrel in a tree, according to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The 13-year-old killed the squirrel, then decided to shoot at it again in the tree. He missed when he shot, and the bullet deflected off the tree, striking the 8-year-old who was down range approximately 40 feet away and off to the side from the tree.

The 8-year-old was struck in the back of the head and began bleeding. He was alert and coherent after he was struck. Emergency medical personnel treated the boy at the scene, and at approximately 4 p.m., he was flown from the island of Vinalhaven to Eastern Maine Medical as a precaution, where he was treated and released.

The Maine Warden Service is investigating the incident, with the assistance of the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. Maine Game Wardens were brought to the scene on a U.S. Coast Guard vessel yesterday afternoon to talk with witnesses and map out the scene where the incident occurred. Once the investigation is complete, the Warden Service will present their findings to the Knox Country District Attorney’s Office, who will then decide if charges are warranted.

As all those involved are juveniles and this is an open investigation, the names of those involved are being withheld. This release will be updated if any new information becomes available.