On Mother’s Day, the mothers of four Newtown victims warned of the danger guns pose to children. Meanwhile, at least five families saw a child injured — or in some tragic cases killed — when a child obtained and accidentally discharged a loaded firearm in the week leading up to the holiday.
- On Monday a 4-year-old boy shot himself in the hand after removing a gun from his father’s safe in Indianapolis, IN. Thankfully, the boy was taken to the hospital and his injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.
- Monday evening a 3-year-old boy in Florida accidentally shot and killed himself with a handgun police believe he found in a backpack belonging to his uncle, who slept in the same bedroom of the apartment also shared with the boy’s parents. The uncle has been charged with culpable negligence, a 3rd degree felony.
- A 7-year-old Texas boy was accidentally shot in the lower back by his 5-year-old brother while taking a bath on Tuesday. The injuries were described by police as “non-life threatening” and no charges were filed against the parents for negligence as of Wednesday morning.
- A 2-year-old Texas boy tragically died after accidentally shooting himself in head Wednesday. The boy found a handgun in a bedroom while his father was in the walk-in closet.
- A 5-year-old boy is reported to be in critical condition after his 8-year-old friend accidentally shot him in the head with a .22 caliber rifle the night before Mother’s Day. Two adults and a teenager were in the home at the time of the shooting.
All of these tragic incidents likely could have been prevented if the children did not have access to the weapons, but 40 percent of households with kids under age 18 do not lock up their guns and almost half of U.S. states lack laws punishing individuals who allow children unsupervised access to firearms.
Guns kill twice as many children and young people as cancer, five times as many as heart disease, and 15 times more than infection each year in the United States according to the New England Journal of Medicine.