Tallahassee Man Charged in Accidental Shooting of His 1-Year-Old Son
A Tallahassee father is facing criminal charges for the death of his 1-year-old son. The 20-year-old defendant is facing charges of culpable negligence and improper storage of a firearm in his son’s death. The accidental shooting occurred on September 6 at the Grove Park Apartments on Dick Wilson Boulevard. According to court records, the 1-year-old was shot in the abdomen while playing with his brother. The defendant told police that he heard a “pop” in the back bedroom and ran to discover that his 1-year-old son had been shot. Police recovered a Glock 19 handgun and found ammunition and another unsecured gun underneath the bed. Surveillance video from inside the apartment confirmed that the children were alone in the bedroom at the time of the shooting. Surveillance also captured the sound of the gun going off. The father was in another room at the time of the shooting watching television. A brother was in the living room playing video games, and the child’s mother was outside talking to a neighbor.
According to police, video shows the defendant and his brother rushing into the bedroom after they heard the sound of the gun going off. The defendant rushed out of the bedroom with the child in his arms. Court records indicate that the defendant and the child’s mother were on the way to the hospital when they were intercepted by paramedics.
Firearm storage laws in Florida
While the legislature has rejected efforts to enforce strict firearm safety rules such as keeping all loaded weapons in locked safes, there are laws on the Florida books that relate to firearm safety when there are minors in the house. Florida has a child access prevention law also known as a safe storage law. This law makes it illegal for an adult to keep a gun in a place that a child can easily access. Proponents claim that these laws prevent tragedies like the one mentioned above. In that case, the father left a weapon within easy access of his children and one child shot the other while playing with the gun. Florida Statute 790.174 requires gun owners to keep their weapons out of easy reach of children. When they fail, they can be charged with a crime.
The law states that:
A person who stores or leaves, on a premise under his or her control, a loaded firearm, as defined in s. 790.001, and who knows or reasonably should know that a minor is likely to gain access to the firearm without the lawful permission of the minor’s parent or the person having charge of the minor, or without the supervision required by law, shall keep the firearm in a securely locked box or container or in a location which a reasonable person would believe to be secure or shall secure it with a trigger lock, except when the person is carrying the firearm on his or her body or within such close proximity thereto that he or she can retrieve and use it as easily and quickly as if he or she carried it on his or her body.
Talk to a Tallahassee Gun Crimes Lawyer Today
Luke Newman, P.A. represents the interests of those who have been charged with weapons crimes. Call our Tallahassee criminal defense lawyers today to schedule an appointment, and we can begin preparing your defense immediately.