While racing to the hospital, they were in a car crash and “there were significant injuries from that as well.”
A 3-year-old boy accidentally shot his 2-year-old sister after finding a gun between some couch cushions at a home in Florida, according to police.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd confirmed the details around the accidental shooting in a press conference on Friday, saying a family friend brought the gun to the home while watching a basketball game with two other men.
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The man who allegedly brought the firearm to the house — 23-year-old Kevonte’ Wilson — told police he hid it in the couch to “keep it away from the children,” who found it while the adults watched the game.
“Just before midnight, during the excitement of the ball game, they heard a pop,” said Judd. “They immediately looked to see the 2-year-old female had been shot and was on the couch and the 3-year-old scrambled from the living room, running and crying to his bedroom.”
The 2-year-old was shot in the chest and was in “exceptionally critical condition” at the time of the press conference. The 3-year-old has been placed in the care of his grandmother while the investigation continues. The children’s mother was away visiting her sister when the accident occurred.
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The three men “raced toward” the hospital, but T-boned another vehicle on the way there. “There were significant injuries from that as well,” said Judd, who added that a Good Samaritan ended up taking the 2-year-old and one of the men to the hospital after learning what happened.
Judd said all three men have “totally cooperated” with authorities and even went as far as to say it was “refreshing” to have that cooperation. The homeowner, 24-year-old Chad Berrien, told police he had no idea Wilson allegedly brought the gun into his home. Berrien is still being charged with possession of marijuana — which authorities found when they searched the home — and maintaining a house for drug use.
Wilson, meanwhile is being charged with failing to safely store a firearm, possession of marijuana and carrying a concealed firearm. The third man, who Judd noted was “shocked and upset,” has not been charged with anything.
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The 3-year-old “obviously” won’t be charged with anything, with Judd saying that “there’s no reason to think that was an intentional act … but we will hold the adults appropriately, criminally liable for the conduct.”
He added that additional charges are anticipated in the coming week, before calling the incident a “horrible tragic accident that should never have occurred.”
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