COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A toddler remains at Nationwide Children’s Hospital with life-threatening injuries after his father says the child accidentally shot himself.
Brandon Hill, 34, faces a felony charge of child endangering after he told police he left his handgun on a nightstand and his son, 2, accidentally shot himself with it. A press release from police early Thursday morning noted that Hill was the only other person in the residence on Noe-Bixby Road at the time of the shooting.
Just a few days ago, another child was hospitalized after accidentally shooting herself, and last month, a boy accidentally shot his younger brother.
Both gun supporters and critics say it’s tragic and preventable.
“Whenever we hear about shootings involving children, especially very young children, it really is just something that’s unimaginable in terms of the amount of tragedy for that family and the larger community,” said Jennifer Thorne, executive director of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence.
Thorne said she believes the best way to prevent accidental shootings is not to keep guns in the home.
“But there are a lot of people that choose to do that and our responsibility is just to explain the risks,” Thorne said.
At AimHi, a gun store and shooting range in New Albany, general manager Robert Strong displayed options for gun owners to keep things safe, from handgun safes with fingerprint readers for loaded self-defense weapons to trigger locks.
“We feel so strongly about it that we have trigger locks like this one, we’ll give you one of these for free if you come into the store and say, ‘I need a trigger lock,'” Strong said.
Strong said it’s difficult to hear about these accidental shootings and that there are ways to prevent them from happening.
“I mean, it’s heartbreaking, and I just wish more people would people would know about things like this because they might think that their only option is not to lock it up or not have it available,” Strong said.
Hill’s charge of child endangering could be increased if the child dies. He does not have a criminal record.