The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > General Discussion Forum

Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old December 31, 2018, 11:29 PM   #1
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
5year old shot with dads gun

So here is the story.

https://news.yahoo.com/5-old-shot-fa...151519453.html

I post this story because as a gun owner I do not know how to respond to this event. To me it is horribly tragic yet highly preventable. I wish the story had more detail.

Some of the comments I'd read following the story are just downright crude and heartless as I am sure the father never thought this would or could happen.

Being a father and grandfather if this were to happen to me someone should just get me a gun and let me end it because I don't think I could ever live with myself if I was responsible .. Sorry may be over emotional ATM.

I will also add that at this time I do not conceal carry so I am not in a position to argue either way.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 12:32 AM   #2
Nathan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2001
Posts: 4,616
Lot of details missing.
Nathan is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 12:58 AM   #3
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
As I stated, I am not a CC person so I've never really paid a lot of attention to the detail involved but this just seems so basic.

I have 3 grandchildren here with me right now ages 2 - 6 and I just couldn't fathom being in that position.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 01:41 AM   #4
JohnKSa
Staff
 
Join Date: February 12, 2001
Location: DFW Area
Posts: 22,050
From other sources, the handgun was a "semi-automatic" .45 caliber pistol.

After having trouble helping various adults try to find guns that they can operate easily, stories like this leave me very curious what kind of pistols can be so easily operated by a 5 year old that they can find one that is stored in any reasonable condition and fire it before an adult in the near vicinity notices anything is amiss.

I'd be very interested to see a study done with a bunch of 5 year olds to see what percentage of them have the hand strength to pull the DA trigger of a semi-auto pistol or cock the hammer, or rack the slide to chamber a round.

Now, I admit it's possible that the gun was left not only chamber loaded, but also cocked. In that case, I have no problem believing that a 5 year old could fire it--and no problem saying that whoever left a loaded and cocked gun unattended where a child could easily find it needs to be punished severely.
__________________
Do you know about the TEXAS State Rifle Association?
JohnKSa is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 06:29 AM   #5
Spats McGee
Staff
 
Join Date: July 28, 2010
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 7,755
I have the feeling that your last paragraph is right, JohnKSa. If all we know is ".45 semiautomatic," there's a good chance it was left with the chamber loaded. Not too far of a stretch to think it might not have had a thumb safety.

Kids will be kids. If a 5 year old finds a button, he's going to push it. If he finds a lever, he's going to pull it. If he finds a trigger, he's going to squeeze it.

These stories are always tragic.
__________________
I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. If you need some honest-to-goodness legal advice, go buy some.
Spats McGee is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 01:19 PM   #6
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
Again not being a person that carries is it normal to leave a gun in the vehicle unattended? I ask because I become uncomfortable when we leave the range bags in the trunk when we go in to eat lunch after a trip to the range. Then I always find a table that gives me a view of the car.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 02:17 PM   #7
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
Another source with a little more detail and then a question.

https://www.newsweek.com/north-carol...ng-lot-1275388

If you carry daily wouldn't it only be a short time before you would be questioning yourself as to where your gun went? Plainly said, wouldn't you feel naked?
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 04:59 PM   #8
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
The other thing is that it reflects badly on all of us gun owners, I believe it reinforces the image to non-gun owners that we are reckless and irresponsible which is so far from the truth. Though there are a few that should never possess a gun or reproduce.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 06:52 PM   #9
Nathan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2001
Posts: 4,616
Quote:
Again not being a person that carries is it normal to leave a gun in the vehicle unattended? I ask because I become uncomfortable when we leave the range bags in the trunk when we go in to eat lunch after a trip to the range. Then I always find a table that gives me a view of the car.
In my world, it is common to be forced to leave your gun in the car. IF you enter a place with a “no gun” sign in OH, you have to leave it in your car. I lock it up in the car.

I’m not sure in what world I leave a loaded gun in my car for several days, forgetting where it might be....that seems reckless....for me. What was mom doing again?

The other thing....no offense intended here, but when guns are involved, there is no telling how this story is being shaped by the news, parents, media.....

If you notice the similar story added on was about a felon with a gun and Kid getting shot.
Nathan is offline  
Old January 1, 2019, 11:51 PM   #10
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
Nathan thanks for the reply. The second story actually looks to mention two separate incidents. Kind of confusing. But back to the yahoo story and the comments following I read many comments in the vein of responsible gun owners. Also a couple of the other stories I looked for and read they all seemed to portray gun owners the same way.

I find myself living in a suburban area and the thought of leaving a gun in a vehicle over night just doesn't sit well. The car being broken into or stolen is a higher probability than me shooting someone. I know there are ways to secure a gun in a car I just don't know that I would do it for an extended period of time. Maybe I'm just a Nervous Nellie.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 2, 2019, 02:25 AM   #11
M88
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 15, 2018
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 211
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmw1954
I know there are ways to secure a gun in a car I just don't know that I would do it for an extended period of time. Maybe I'm just a Nervous Nellie.
Your not a "Nervous Nellie", you're a responsible gun owner, like most of us. Unless forced to, as when I'm carrying and have to enter a "Gun Free" building, I never leave a gun in my car. Especially in the city where my car may be parked blocks away out of sight. Just won't do it.
__________________
NRA life member. Making good people helpless doesn't make bad people harmless!
M88 is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 09:11 AM   #12
Skans
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 20, 2008
Posts: 10,780
I look upon this as I wold any tragic death involving a small child and something inherently dangerous. Swimming pools, chemicals, laundry "pods", running into a street, etc. When a small child is in your care, that child requires your extraordinary attention and care to ensure that the child doesn't get into something that can harm him/her. Guns included.
Skans is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 10:55 AM   #13
Glenn E. Meyer
Staff
 
Join Date: November 17, 2000
Posts: 19,812
There have been studies on young kids manipulating various semi autos and they can. They can use two hands, two fingers on the trigger, lean muzzles against tables to cock them and use body weight. Kids can team up to manipulate a gun. Certainly three year olds can do it.

If you ask about hand strength, I looked up children's hand strength and there is a medical literature for orthopedic problems, recovery from breaks, etc. Some two and certainly three year olds have the strength.

A five year old can without much difficulty.

Also, they've tested if gun safety instruction 'takes' on kids this age. Many folks say that they tell their guns this and that in patriarch mode. Turns out a large number of kids when alone or in groups with no adult around (despite the instruction) pick up the guns and play with them.

There is no safe way to let a child have unsupervised access and access at the young ages if at all has to be tightly supervised.
__________________
NRA, TSRA, IDPA, NTI, Polite Soc. - Aux Armes, Citoyens
Glenn E. Meyer is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 11:12 AM   #14
5whiskey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 23, 2005
Location: US
Posts: 2,942
Quote:
I look upon this as I wold any tragic death involving a small child and something inherently dangerous. Swimming pools, chemicals, laundry "pods", running into a street, etc. When a small child is in your care, that child requires your extraordinary attention and care to ensure that the child doesn't get into something that can harm him/her. Guns included.
Touche'

That's the real issue right there isn't it? Yes, I do not agree with leaving a loaded and unsecured firearm in a vehicle. Kids aren't the only reason. Arming criminals who may break in my vehicle is a very real concern to me. Yes, I don't want one of my firearms stolen because it deprives me of my property, but more important to me is that my guns don't arm criminals. I do feel like stuffing a gun in the pocket behind a seat for days and forgetting about it is imprudent (a nice way of putting it). But at the end of the day, why is this a national story when it's not a national story when a toddler drowns in a swimming pool (a fairly common occurrence).

Actually since you posted that Skans I went to the CDC webpage and did some research. All data is from 2016 From ages 1-44 years old, unintentional injury is the leading cause of death (see chart in link below)
https://webappa.cdc.gov/cgi-bin/broker.exe

Motor Vehicle Accidents and Drownings are the top two causes of unintentional injury deaths from ages 1-14. They tend to trade places depending on specific age range. From ages 1-4, Drowing accounts for 33.7% of deaths, MV accidents for 26.5%, and accidental firearm deaths account for 2.7%. Story is quite similar for other ages. Here's a chart for ages 1-4 (if it works).



Also, for all ages unintentional injury is the 3rd leading cause of death behind heart disease and malignant neoplasms (whatever that is). Firearms were responsible in 0.3% of unintentional injury deaths across all ages. 0.3%, that's it. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death, of which half were with firearms. Homicide was not in the top 10 causes of death, at least for all age groups combined.

As a matter of fact, pivoting a little, there were a little over 38k gun deaths in 2016. About 2/3rds were suicide. Drug overdose deaths, a form of poison death, accounted for over 64k deaths. I have been unable to find data on all other poison substances, they harped on drug overdose because of opioids.

All info from

https://www.poison.org/poison-statistics-national

and

https://www.cdc.gov/


At any rate, back to relevance of the OP. Yes this is tragic. Yes I believe the father (and possibly mother) was quite reckless. Criminally so? I don't know, if the he is a decent man he must be devastated and guilt-laden. Punishing him criminally probably won't do any more than what he's already going through, other than dragging it out. But the issue I do have is Yahoo profiling this because they have an agenda. There are many other, much more prolific, causes of death that don't make national headlines. Ok Yahoo, waiting to see a story about how you deem parents to be unfit because they had a toddler accidentally drowing in the home swimming pool. My bet is you won't see such an article there.
__________________
Support the NRA-ILA Auction, ends 03/09/2018

https://thefiringline.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=593946

Last edited by 5whiskey; January 3, 2019 at 12:50 PM.
5whiskey is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 11:45 AM   #15
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
5whiskey I came across that while looking for something else and also one that show the number of deaths and injuries attributed to house fires and those numbers are astonishing too.

Really though I can think of a number of things around my home that are just as dangerous or more so then firearms. Electric powder tools like drills and saws, gas cans, cleaning chems,

But again I will ask, how do you all feel about how this reflects on all gun owners in the eye of non gun owners. My opinion is it doesn't help.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 11:47 AM   #16
Skans
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 20, 2008
Posts: 10,780
Quote:
Actually since you posted that Skans I went to the CDC webpage and did some research. All data is from 2016 From ages 1-44 years old, unintentional injury is the leading cause of death (see chart in link below)
https://webappa.cdc.gov/cgi-bin/broker.exe
5Whiskey - interesting chart. What I find particularly interesting is the relatively high rate of child deaths from suffocation and burns, which I never hear about on the news.
Skans is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 01:12 PM   #17
TrueBlue711
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 16, 2011
Posts: 369
It's always heartbreaking to hear stories like these. Like mentioned, really no details from the article, so I'm not going to comment on what the dad could've done better.

One of my old high school classmates had a similar tragedy, except it went the other way around. She was pushing a cart in a store shopping with both her purse and her ~2 year old daughter in the toddler seat part of the shopping cart. While she (mom) was looking at the shelves, her daughter was playing in her purse and accidently discharged her CCW revolver and killed the mom.

Kids will definitely find things they aren't meant to. Which brings up a question for those who do have kids and guns. Is Eddie Eagle still a thing? I remember growing up and my parents made me watch Eddie Eagle cartoon clips when I was a kid. Even my elementary school showed the clips, but I doubt schools will entertain that these days.
For those who don't know, Eddie Eagle was the Smokey Bear of guns sponsored by the NRA. His cartoon clips showed kids who were about to find their parents' gun in the closet and he swooped in, stopped them and had them sing "Stop. Don't touch. Leave the area. Tell an adult".
TrueBlue711 is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 01:20 PM   #18
5whiskey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 23, 2005
Location: US
Posts: 2,942
Quote:
But again I will ask, how do you all feel about how this reflects on all gun owners in the eye of non gun owners. My opinion is it doesn't help.
Oh I quite agree that this reflects poorly on gun ownership. I also agree that the gun owner in this instance behaved irresponsibly. Which is the purpose of running the story nationally. "5 year old shot in face after dad left gun in car..." is a sensationalist title. I won't contend that the title is factually incorrect, but "5 year old injured in accidental shooting with father's gun" would also be factually correct. Subtle, but distinct differences. An example...

Take the CNN story:
https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/26/polit...ase/index.html

The title is "Ruth Bader Ginsburg released from hospital after cancer surgery." The title is factually accurate.

Based off of information in the story, a factually accurate title could also be "Aging Supreme Court Justice, 85, released from hospital again after lung cancer treatment less than 2 months after breaking 3 ribs in a fall at home."

See the difference in the two titles? One does not overtly question, or invoke concern of, a person's fitness for an office they hold due to health concerns. The other clearly does. I wonder what CNN's title would actually be if it were not RBG, but instead Clarence Thomas. 10 to 1 that there would be a passing mention of a controversy over 25 years old now, because media with an agenda must get in rabbit punches where they can.
__________________
Support the NRA-ILA Auction, ends 03/09/2018

https://thefiringline.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=593946
5whiskey is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 01:29 PM   #19
5whiskey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 23, 2005
Location: US
Posts: 2,942
Quote:
Kids will definitely find things they aren't meant to. Which brings up a question for those who do have kids and guns. Is Eddie Eagle still a thing? I remember growing up and my parents made me watch Eddie Eagle cartoon clips when I was a kid. Even my elementary school showed the clips, but I doubt schools will entertain that these days.
For those who don't know, Eddie Eagle was the Smokey Bear of guns sponsored by the NRA. His cartoon clips showed kids who were about to find their parents' gun in the closet and he swooped in, stopped them and had them sing "Stop. Don't touch. Leave the area. Tell an adult".
You don't see as much of Eddie Eagle these days, but my Police Department got some material gifted from the NRA semi-recently with Eddie the Eagle. It was less than a couple years ago. They were coloring/comic book, along with some brochures on tips for parents.
__________________
Support the NRA-ILA Auction, ends 03/09/2018

https://thefiringline.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=593946
5whiskey is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 02:05 PM   #20
TailGator
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 8, 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 3,504
Quote:
malignant neoplasms (whatever that is)
Cancer.
TailGator is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 04:17 PM   #21
Nathan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2001
Posts: 4,616
The other problem with gun news is it is easy to forget how the child was shot.

Child shoots self in face = parents don’t go to jail or get questioned much.

Child shot by by drug dealer while baby daddy negotiating a better price on crack trying to rent baby momma for sexual favors in barter deal gone wrong = jail time.

Obviously two extremes, but it can be hard to remember just exactly how kid was shot.
Nathan is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 04:24 PM   #22
Doyle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 20, 2007
Location: Starkville, MS
Posts: 6,830
Quote:
Child shoots self in face = parents don’t go to jail or get questioned much.
Actually, Florida has a specific criminal consequence of negligently allowing a child to get hold of a firearm. That is something I'm not opposed to.
Doyle is offline  
Old January 3, 2019, 06:48 PM   #23
kmw1954
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 11, 2016
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1,185
Thank you everyone for the responses. Not much any of us are going to be able to do to cancel this horrible incident from the public memory but I am going to look closer at my own habits.
kmw1954 is offline  
Old January 4, 2019, 04:00 PM   #24
RC20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 10, 2008
Location: Alaska
Posts: 5,679
Trying to merge this into an overall death rate is not going to void the responsibly of having caused a death.

Frankly I don't remember how my folks handled the situati9on. I know I never saw a gun in the house when I was under age 13 or so, we had 3 rifles and 3 pistols.

I do know its my responsibility to keep the guns secured and or the ammo separated such that kids can't access them.

Hell is likely kind vs having to live with having been the cause of that kind of death.
__________________
Science and Facts are True whether you believe it or not
RC20 is offline  
Old January 5, 2019, 04:55 PM   #25
44 AMP
Staff
 
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 19,120
Quote:
But again I will ask, how do you all feel about how this reflects on all gun owners in the eye of non gun owners.
Those people who feel without thinking things through will continue to be influenced by the "spin" of the headline. Those who use rational thought will see that it was the individual, not the community at fault.

if the father had left the child in a hot car and the child died, the outrage would be against a bad parent, NOT a bad car owner.
__________________
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
44 AMP is offline  
Closed Thread

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:23 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2018 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.09614 seconds with 8 queries