A 6-year-old fatally shot his grandfather with an AK-47 assault rifle after the loaded gun was left on a table at a family barbeque. The boy’s uncle has been charged with negligence.
WSVN reports that 28-year-old Juan Manuel Martinez Jr. was talking to a group of friends and family at the gathering in Homestead, Florida when the group got on the subject of hunting. Martinez brought out his gun to display.
The man admitted not only to having a couple beers in him at the time, but also to smoking marijuana and doing cocaine, according to NBC Miami.
Left unattended, the curious 6-year-old picked up the weapon from the table and pulled the trigger, hitting his grandfather, Juan Manuel Martinez Sr., in the chest.
“We heard the gun shot go off. My father was struck in the chest before he was airlifted to the hospital, and they told us that he passed,” Martinez Jr. told WSVN.
"I should’ve never brought the firearm out.”
The boy is receiving grief counseling after the tragedy.
“It’s not his fault. He didn’t know what he was doing,” Martinez Jr. said. “He’s just a little boy. I love him. He’s my family. I love all my family.”
Martinez Jr. said that his family is not “point[ing] the finger at anybody.”
“This is a tragic event that occurred. We can’t say it was my fault, it was my nephew’s fault, it was my father’s fault. It’s just a tragic event that occurred. If there was anything I could do to bring him back, God help me I would.”
The law, on the other hand, has pointed the finger squarely at Martinez Jr., pinning him with charges of culpable negligence of a firearm with easy access to a minor.
“If you are a gun owner, you need to know that you are responsible for that gun. You’re responsible on how to handle that gun and of the safety of the people around you,” said Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta, whose investigators found the alcohol and drugs at the scene.
Martinez Jr. bonded out of jail after being arrested and booked.