A daycare drop-off turned tragic early Thursday morning when an 8-year-old Alabama boy found a gun in his uncle’s car and accidentally shot himself in the head or face area.
WBRC reports that while a 24-year-old man, who has not been identified, was dropping his niece off at a daycare center, – St. Joseph’s daycare located on 13 Street Ensley in Birmingham – he left his nephew behind in the car.
The child found a loaded gun in the vehicle and accidentally shot himself.
When the man returned to his vehicle, he found his nephew with a gunshot wound to the head or face area and immediately drove to UAB Hospital while simultaneously dialing 911. Upon arrival, medical staff transferred the child to Children’s of Alabama, where he underwent surgery.
Lt. Sean Edwards, spokesperson for the Birmingham Police Department stated that that young boy is fighting for his life.
“It’s serious. He’s fighting for his life, but I believe he is in great hands.”
The child’s uncle, who often takes the children to school, was questioned by investigators but they have yet to uncover how the child became in possession of the gun.
“This was just a grave, grave accident. I can only imagine probably what he’s dealing with right now,” Edwards added. “But you know the truth of the matter is as adults, it’s our responsibility to make sure we secure our firearms especially when there are children around. There’s just no room for error when it comes to firearms.”
Although the shooting is being noted as an accident, police officials say criminal charges are not being ruled out.
“This is not the first time we’ve had an accidental shooting where an adult has left a firearm unsecured, so we’re going to do our due diligence if there is a possibility charges come forth,” said Edwards.
The boy remains in serious condition.