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Pinal teen hurt when ammo explodes after hit with hammer

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(Photo: Pinal County Sheriff's Office) A Pinal County teenager was wounded in the hand by shrapnel after a shotgun shell he hit with a hammer exploded in a metal pipe Saturday afternoon. (Photo: Pinal County Sheriff's Office) A Pinal County teenager was wounded in the hand by shrapnel after a shotgun shell he hit with a hammer exploded in a metal pipe Saturday afternoon.
FLORENCE, AZ (CBS5) -

A Pinal County teenager was wounded in the hand by shrapnel after a shotgun shell he hit with a hammer exploded in a metal pipe Saturday afternoon.

The boy and a friend, both 14 years old, had found various rounds of ammunition in a shed in the 83000 block of East Palomita Drive just outside Mammoth and decided to put a metal pipe in a vise as a makeshift gun barrel, according to Tim Gaffney of the Pinal County Sheriff's Office.

The teens placed the different rounds inside the pipe and struck the primers with a hammer or ax to fire them, Gaffney said.

Gaffney said the teens appeared to have successfully fired at least two rounds for a .30-30 rifle. A wooden chest of drawers about 20 feet from the end of the pipe had at least one hole from a bullet.

But when one of the teens put a 12-gauge shotgun shell in to the pipe and tried to fire it the same way, the shell exploded, lodging shrapnel into his left hand, Gaffney said.

The unspent rounds were seized because the guardian of the wounded boy is prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition. Gaffney said the guardian told deputies he had inherited the property from the grandfather and that the ammunition had been left in the shed. He also denied knowing what the teens were doing, Gaffney said.

The injured teen was stabilized at the scene and taken to a Tucson hospital where he underwent surgery.

Child Protective Services was notified, Gaffney said.

There was no word on whether the guardian would face any charges.

Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

SIDEBAR: Shell explodes, wounds Pinal teen who hits it with hammer

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