Monday, October 27, 2008

Boy, 8, killed in Mass. gun show accident

WESTFIELD, Mass. – An 8-year-old boy died after accidentally shooting himself in the head while firing an Uzi submachine gun under adult supervision at a gun fair.

The boy lost control of the weapon while firing it Sunday at the Machine Gun Shoot and Firearms Expo at the Westfield Sportsman's Club, police Lt. Lawrence Vallierpratte said.

The boy, Christopher Bizilj of Ashford, Conn., was with a certified instructor and "was shooting the weapon down range when the force of the weapon made it travel up and back toward his head, where he suffered the injury," a police statement said.

Christopher died at Baystate Medical Center.

Police said the boy's father, Charles Bizilj, attended the event with his son. The father is the medical director of emergency medicine at Johnson Memorial Hospital, in Stafford Springs, Conn.

Although police called it a "self-inflicted accidental shooting," police and the Hampden district attorney's office were investigating, officials said.

"We are going to review all the circumstance regarding what happened, who was involved, what authorities they may or may not have had, who was supervising," District Attorney William Bennett said Monday.

It is legal for children to fire a weapon if they have permission from a parent or legal guardian and are supervised by a properly certified and licensed instructor, Lt. Hipolito Nunez said.

The above story is an important one to note. I don't know if someone wasn't doing all they could. I wasn't there.

What I do know is that you could fill a couple of school buses with 8 year old boys killed on bicycles, swimming pools, skate boards and playgrounds every year.

While one child's death is a tragedy it is nothing compared to the tragedy of letting criminals become the only armed persons in our society. Look south, to Mexico, where citizens are forbidden effective self-defense. The government has no control over significant parts of the country because the drug lords, already in the import/export business, are well armed with full-auto firearms.

How many 8 year old Mexican boys are dead because of crime in that nation?

A lot more than shoot themselves accidentally while at a gun range up here.

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