A 3-year-old girl shot herself dead after finding a gun that her dad had cleaned the night before. Fox 4 KBTV reports that the tragic event happened around 7 p.m. Monday night in Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana.
Authorities from the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office say they responded to the shooting at a residence on Arsene Road in Lebleu Settlement. When they arrived they saw the toddler with a gunshot wound. Alexis Mercer was transported to a local hospital, but pronounced dead.
The 3-year-old shot herself after handling one of the guns that her father had cleaned in the living room. Alexis, her mother, and two other siblings – ages, 1 and 2 – were away from the home while he was cleaning the weapons the night before. He reportedly forgot to put them away before leaving for work the next morning.
Once the investigation concludes, the case will be given to the District Attorney’s Office to determine if any charges will be filed. CPSO Detective Brent Young is named as the lead investigator in the Alexis Mercer case.
Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso tells KPLC News 7 that as a sheriff, “I have to tell people, you have got to protect our children.” He adds that this makes him “angry” and his “heart hurts” because “it’s just something that shouldn’t happen.”
A spokeswoman with the sheriff’s office said the guns left by the father in living room included a rifle and two handguns. The 3-year-old girl reportedly shot herself with one of the handguns.
Mancuso is taking the same stance so many in law enforcement take when they’re involved in a case involving children shooting themselves dead like Alexis.
“Lock your guns, and keep them out of reach of children. They can’t do it on their own. They’re curious. They’re going to go look. They’re going to show a friend. If you can’t afford a gun safe, every single gun that’s sold in America comes with a gun lock. Lock your guns and keep them out of reach of children.”
The Inquisitr keeps up with these tragic events involving children getting hold of loaded firearms. One toddler found a gun mistaken for a Wii control and died as a result. In another tragedy, a 2-year-old found a gun sitting in the car and died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. In that case, police say all precautions were actually taken.
In an event about Alexis Mercer shooting herself, no precautions were taken and the 3-year-old died as a result of accidentally shooting herself.
[Photo Credit: Mercer Family via KPLC-TV]