Five-year-old boy accidentally kills sister with his own rifle

NASHVILLE, Tenn Wed May 1, 2013 4:00pm EDT

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NASHVILLE, Tenn (Reuters) - A 2-year-old girl was accidentally shot and killed by her 5-year-old brother with a rifle he received as a birthday gift, Kentucky authorities said on Wednesday.

The shooting occurred on Tuesday afternoon in Burkesville, Kentucky, a community in the south-central part of the state, when the boy was playing with the .22-caliber rifle and accidentally shot his sister in the chest, state police said.

The boy had received the Crickett "youth model" gun for his birthday in November, Cumberland County Coroner Gary White said. White said these guns have child safety locks, but "evidently when the gun was put up, there was a live round in it."

He said no one realized the gun, which was kept in a corner, was loaded until the fatal gunshot.

White said the children's mother was home cleaning the house at the time of the shooting.

"She had just come out of the kitchen and went to the porch to throw out some grease from the skillet," White said.

Kentucky State Trooper Billy Gregory said police were investigating and it was "a little early" to talk about possible charges in connection with the shooting.

White called the shooting "a tragic accident."

"I've been the county coroner for 15 years and I think this is the first time I've had a case like this," White said. "I'm hoping that parents will realize that if you have kids, you need to put the guns out of harm's way."

(Reporting by Tim Ghianni; Editing by Mary Wisniewski and Richard Chang)

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Comments (11)
gregbrew56 wrote:
A sad event, and I feel for the family…BUT

…it was less a “tragic accident” than it was a negligent parent.

I think we should institute “irresponsible parent control” IMMEDIATELY!

May 01, 2013 3:58pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
kafantaris wrote:
Gun owners and their family members are often the first victims of guns.
When will they realize this is too dear a price to pay for having these weapons around.

May 01, 2013 4:08pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Daybreak wrote:
Children at such an age need to be taught the value of life, not be shooting things up all the time. If he had been left alone with some Legos or toy cars or even a Nerf gun (if your children MUST be shooting and pretending to kill things 24/7), would his sister really be dead?

I understand guns are a necessity for some people. I grew up in West Virginia, and I understand that people enjoy keeping guns for recreation as well. People who hunt for food or sport, are in rifle competitions, or ranchers who need guns to protect their livestock from coyotes or something, fine. But there is absolutely no need for children to have guns, to be taught that they are toys, and to be indoctrinated that guns are a right. Guns are ONLY a right if the owner is responsible.

May 01, 2013 4:47pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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