Teen accidentally shot near Washburn
Incident ruled an accident by Barry County Sheriff’s Office
A teenager was accidentally shot after a rifle mistakenly discharged in a home near Washburn recently.
Gary Davis, Barry County sheriff, said deputies received a call to go to Mercy Hospital in Cassville in response to a gunshot wound. On arrival, deputies spoke to a 17-year-old and an 18-year-old. The 17-year-old was struck in the upper thigh by a .22-caliber firearm.
“They said they saw a coyote out in the pasture and they grabbed a .22 to go kill the coyote before it killed one of their calves,” Davis said. “They said they were going down the hallway in the home when the butt stock hit the wall in the narrow hallway and the firearm discharged.”
Davis said both the teenagers, whose names are being withheld because of their ages, had the same story, leading deputies to rule the shooting as an accident. No charges were filed.
“This just goes back to rule No. 1 when handling guns, treat every gun like it is loaded,” Davis said. “If the gun was being carried with the barrel up and pointed to the ceiling, this probably would not have happened.”
Davis said for further information on gun safety and minors, people should look up the Eddie Eagle Program.
“The Eddie Eagle GunSafe program is a gun accident prevention program that seeks to help parents, law enforcement, community groups and educators navigate a topic paramount to our children’s safety,” the program’s website says. “Eddie and his Wing Team are on a mission to help you teach Pre-K through fourth-graders what to do if they ever come across a gun.”
For those more experienced in handling weapons, Davis said following basic safety rules. According to the National Rifle Association, fundamental rules for safe handling include:
• Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction
• Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot
• Always keep the gun unloaded unloaded until ready to use
• Know your target and what is beyond
• Know how to use the gun safely
• Be sure the gun is safe to operate
• Use only the correct ammunition
• Wear eye and ear protection as appropriate
• Never use alcohol, over-the-counter drugs or prescription drugs before or while shooting
• Store guns where they are not accessible to unauthorized persons
• Regularly clean guns after each use