5-year-old gets hands on loaded gun, fatally shoots mom

A 5-year-old boy is “responsible” for the death of an Arizona mom who was shot in the chest last week, authorities said.

Michele Cox, 38, was killed around 6 a.m. Friday in what detectives believe was an accidental shooting, according to police. The woman sustained a single gunshot wound and was pronounced dead at a hospital later that morning.

Load Error

It was not immediately clear how the shooting took place, but it appears that the child found a loaded handgun at their home in Casa Grande and managed to pull the trigger, striking his own mother in the chest, police said.

The woman’s three other children, ages 4 to 12, and her 40-year-old boyfriend were also at the home at the time of the shooting, the Casa Grande Police Department said in a news release. None of them was injured during the incident.

No charges have been filed, but police said they are working with the Pinal County Attorney’s Office to determine the next steps in the investigation.

“This is a stark reminder that owning and safeguarding a firearm is a serious responsibility and should be a priority in anyone’s home or business, especially if children are present,” police said in the release.

7 thoughts on “5-year-old gets hands on loaded gun, fatally shoots mom

  1. Guns should never be left loaded and anywhere where children can get to them!!!! I have lost a cousin and also a good friend to guns and if I didn’t leave my ex-husband I would be dead too!!!!!

  2. And who would be at fault for this fatality my guess would be either the mother or the boyfriend for leaving a loaded handgun around instead of securing the gun or at the very least removing the magazine and clearing the chamber!

  3. Children are naturally curious about guns. Guns not in use should be unloaded and locked in a safe or lockbox. Home defense guns should be out of sight or reach of children or family visitors. Children should be taught and shown about the dangers of guns as soon as they are old enough to understand, that guns are not toys.

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