A 3-year-old Florida boy accidentally shot a 2-year-old girl with a loaded gun a man hid in their couch cushions, officials said Saturday.
Kevonte’ Wilson, 23, went over to the Lakeland house Friday to watch basketball and shoved the gun in the couch to keep it away from the young children, he told investigators, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said during a press conference Saturday.
Just before midnight, the toddler found the gun and fired, hitting the girl.
The three men in the house, including Wilson, grabbed the girl and rushed her to the hospital, but got into a car accident on the way.
That’s when a good Samaritan, who stopped to help in the crash, took the girl the rest of the way to the hospital.
The young girl was shot once in her upper left chest and was last listed in critical but stable condition at Lakeland Regional Health.
“It can’t be stressed enough, if you have firearms in your home, keep them away from children,” Judd said Saturday.
“A beautiful little girl is fighting for her life right now because another child who didn’t know any better was able to get his hands on a loaded gun.”
Wilson has been charged with ailing to safely store a firearm, carrying a concealed firearm and possession of marijuana, but could face additional charges, Judd said.
The homeowner, 24-year-old Chad Berrien, was charged with possession of marijuana and maintaining a house for drug use.
The relationship between Berrien and the children, or between the boy and girl, is unknown.
The third man in the house, 23-year-old Rodderick Haynes, was not charged.
“I don’t know how you think you safely keep a gun away from children when you stick it between the couch,” Judd said. “He was a baby playing with what he saw as some kind of toy.”