A small community in Fresno, California, is in shock after learning that a young boy somehow got his hands on a loaded pistol and fatally shot himself in the head while his parents were away.
There were two adults inside the home with the child on Saturday, when the incident took place, ABC 30 reports, and the Fresno Police Department has since made an arrest.
In a press conference yesterday, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer announced that 35-year-old Oscar Ramos—a family friend who lives in the house—was charged with criminal storage of a firearm.
Investigators say that 2-year-old Jace Alexander had stayed home with Ramos and 22-year-old Jenna Moya (the fiancée of Jace's father) while his father went to work that day.
After breakfast, police say Ramos and Moya left the boy alone in the living room to watch cartoons while they went into the master bedroom "to play video games" for approximately 30 minutes. That's when they claim they heard a "pop" and found Jace in his bedroom with a gunshot wound to the head.
Moya told police that she asked Ramos to call 911, but he never did. After several minutes had passed, she claims she grabbed the phone and called 911 herself.
Jace was still breathing when paramedics arrived. He was rushed to Valley Children's Hospital, where he died a few hours later.
Ramos, who admits to leaving a loaded pistol on the entertainment center Friday night, faces up to three years in prison if convicted of the crime.
This marks the 12th child killed by a gun in the U.S. this month alone—and it’s only July 10. While not all of those shootings were accidental, the number of unintentional deaths begs the question of why so many gun owners—especially those with small children in the home—refuse to follow the American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendation for gun safety?
It's quite simple, really. If you are a gun owner, keep your firearms locked up, unloaded and out of reach of children, ideally with ammunition stored in a separate, locked location.