A 9-year-old girl was accidentally fatally shot in the head by her 3-year-old brother Saturday afternoon in Irondale, Alabama. The child found an unsecured loaded weapon then unintentionally fired the fatal shot while the two were playing.
Authorities said the little girl was shot in the head and initially suffered life-threatening injuries, before succumbing to her injuries after being flown by medical helicopter to a children’s hospital.
The shooting occurred at around 2:10 p.m. in the bedroom of the children’s grandparent’s house on Monroe Drive, AL.com reports.
“It appears to be a tragic accident,” Chief Ken Atkinson said, but the shooting remains under investigation.
Atkinson said the 3-year-old boy found a loaded pistol on a bedroom nightstand, then shot his sister in the head.
He said the grandfather of the children had left the loaded gun on the nightstand not realizing that his grandchildren were coming over that day.
“I came in and when I came in the door, my son came out and said she had been shot” says the victim’s great grandfather, Joel Watson, according to WIAT.
Family members who were home at the time of the shooting, and said they did not know the gun was in the room the kids were playing in.
“Her grandma was laying the towel on her head and laid down there and started praying, she was praying, I was praying, my wife was screaming and praying. Nobody knows how that feel until you experience it” Watson said.
Watch courtesy of WIAT:
“My understanding is the great grandfather had the pistol laying on the dresser. The uncle and grandmother didn’t know it was laying there as well,” Atkinson said.
“The lesson is you have to make sure those weapons are put up, out of sight and out of reach, really of anyone, but especially children,” he said. “It is tragic because this 3-year-old has no idea what is going on right now. It is just a horrible situation.”
So many lives are harmed during a shooting, especially a child’s, and it could have easily be prevented in each instance.
Secure your weapons. Otherwise, you don’t morally get to call it an ‘accident.’
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