District Attorney General Russell Johnson provided a press release on the condition of an 8-year-old boy from Morgan County that accidentally shot himself on Friday.
At approximately 7:17 pm on Friday, Morgan County Sheriff Wayne Potter was informed that an 8-year-old boy had been shot and wounded at a residence on Ray Cross Road in Morgan County. Morgan County Sheriff’s deputies, EMS and Sheriff Potter all responded to the scene. The boy was taken by LifeStar to UT Medical Center and the parents followed in a vehicle being driven by relatives.
The mother, who was at home at the time along with the gunshot victim and the victim’s sibling, stated that she and one child were in the living room when she heard a ‘pop’. She went into the kitchen and discovered her son had been shot with what turned out to be a 9 mm handgun. According to the statement of the mother and the statement of the father, who was at work at the time, it is believed that the father placed or keeps the loaded handgun in a holster on top of the refrigerator in the kitchen. The mother stated that the victim evidently used a chair, as he sometime does, to climb up on the countertops in the kitchen. This time he apparently reached on top of the refrigerator to get the gun and somehow shot himself one time in the upper chest area.
The mother called 911 at 7:11 pm. Morgan County EMS arrived and rendered immediate medical aid and the victim was flown to UT Medical Center. According to Sheriff Potter, the boy was later transferred to Children’s Hospital and released on Saturday. The gunshot went entirely through the child’s body without hitting vital organs but did fracture his shoulder. Otherwise, the child is doing well.
Sheriff Potter also reported that DCS has been to the house several times regarding this boy and that DCS was immediately notified by the Morgan County Sheriff after he arrived on scene at the direction of District Attorney General Russell Johnson.
This is the second shooting of a child with a loaded handgun being kept in the home in General Johnson’s four county district in the last week. Fortunately, this one did not result in death. Last Sunday a four-year-old girl was shot and killed in Rockwood (Roane County) by the girlfriend of the girl’s custodian.