UPDATE: Mother responds to criticism after 6-year-old fires rifle left in vehicle
WATCH ABOVE: The mother of a six-year-old boy who managed to fire a gun while he was left alone in a car with his siblings is speaking out. Eric Szeto reports.
EDMONTON – A Fox Creek, Alberta couple is under scrutiny after leaving three children — aged one to six — in a vehicle with a loaded weapon.
The parents cannot be identified because youth are involved and the father is facing several charges in connection with the incident. His wife did, however, speak to Global News.
She says the family was on its way home from hunting on Saturday when her husband spotted a garage sale that the two decided to check out. While doing so, they left their children in the vehicle, along with a disassembled rifle on the front passenger seat.
“We ended up turning our backs for a couple seconds and [my 6-year-old] was able to access the gun and put it in the backseat,” she admitted.
Her eldest son managed to assemble the rifle. He then fired a shot out the driver’s side of the vehicle.
Luckily, no one was injured.
“If we knew he knew how to assemble it we would have never ever left that bolt in the truck.”
“If I could turn back time I would,” she said tearfully.
She guesses her son, who has gone hunting with his father for years, learned how to assemble a rifle from watching his father clean it countless times.
The 37-year-old father now faces the following charges, which he will answer to in November:
- Unsafe storage of firearms
- Unauthorized possession of a firearm
- Possession of a firearm in a motor vehicle
- Possession of a restricted firearm with ammunition with a licence/registration
- Child endangerment
Fox Creek is located in northwestern Alberta, about halfway between Edmonton and Grande Prairie.
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