A 2-year-old shot his parents and wounded himself after finding a handgun on their nightstand

A 2-year-old shot his parents and wounded himself after finding a handgun on their nightstand

May 16, 2021
  • A two-year-old boy shot his parents and wounded himself after finding a gun on a nightstand.
  • An investigation is underway to understand how the young boy gained access to the gun.
  • A Maine gun safety group is now pushing for a bill that would require gun owners to keep firearms locked away.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A two-year-old boy shot his parents and wounded himself with a handgun after he discovered the weapon on his parents’ nightstand on Wednesday morning, the police said.

The child’s 25-year-old father was shot in the head and his mother, 22, suffered a leg wound, according to Sagadahoc County Sherriff Joel Merry.

The toddler was struck in the face by the recoil of the handgun, Merry added. 

All three were transported to Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick, Maine. They were treated for non-life-threatening injuries, the sheriff said.

An investigation is underway to understand how the young boy gained access to the gun.

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“The question of how the boy was able to pick up and fire the weapon is of great concern and is being investigated,” Merry told reporters. “This situation, while disturbing, could have had an even more tragic ending. We are thankful that the injuries were not more serious.”

In response to the shooting, the Maine Gun Safety Coalition (MGSC) is pushing for a bill that requires gun owners to keep loaded guns out of children’s reach.

The MGCS is supporting Bill LL 759, WMTV reported. If passed, the law would hold gun owners criminally responsible if a child can access and use a loaded firearm that was not properly stored.

“Even toddlers know where guns are kept. So, these guns need to be secured,” Rep. Vickie Doudera, who is sponsoring the bill, told WMTV. “They need to be in a locked safe, or they need a trigger lock, a slide lock, or something that keeps a kid from being able to fire it.”

Only one US state — Massachusetts — legally requires gun owners to keep firearms locked away, according to Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.

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