A man from Ocala, Florida accidentally shot his elderly mother in the stomach region while retrieving his gun from its storage place late Wednesday afternoon.
Fifty-five-year-old Attila Frank “Sonny” Kerekes told police officers that his mother, 82-year-old Edith Kerekes, had asked him to show her his gun. He went to get the weapon, and accidentally fired it while removing it from the bag that housed it.
Although Edith was in the kitchen and Sonny was a different room, Sonny said that the bullet hit her in the abdomen after blasting through a wall.
According to police reports, the gun once belonged to Sonny’s father, who died in the early ‘80s. He used the weapon, a .38 revolver, to shoot sharks in Miami, where he worked in the fishing industry.
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Sonny claimed that he did not realize that the bullet had hurt his mother until she began complaining about pain in the stomach region. He said that he called 911 as soon as he realized what had happened.
Edith was admitted to the hospital for surgery, and the Ocala Star Banner reports that her condition is stable.
Sonny moved in with his mother several months before the incident.
Although many people purchase guns to help ensure their own safety, firearms are 22 times more likely to be used in accidental shootings than in self-defense, according to Scientific American.
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About 31,672 people were killed by guns in 2010, the latest year for which statistics are available. Roughly 61 percent of those deaths were suicides, and most of the rest were homicides.
Beyond deaths, 72,505 people went to the emergency room for non-lethal shootings in 2010.
While accidental shootings are often caused by children who find their parent’s weapons, even trained adults may accidentally discharge guns.