Reports that a girl’s Uzi was too much for her, by her own admission, are sparking further debate about the recent incident at an Arizona gun range that left two families devastated. The girl’s Uzi shooting range instructor died after the recoil of the weapon she was shooting caused the gun to raise up and the instructor was hit. Though the girl’s family has not been named, they have released a statement via their attorney about the accident that killed instructor Charles Vacca.
CBS News shares that the 9-year-old girl’s family says that they are devastated by this “life-changing tragedy.” Reports say the girl’s Uzi was too much for her to handle by her own admission right after the shooting. Police reports indicate that immediately after the shooting, the girl said the gun hurt her shoulder and was too much for her. Right after the shooting, the family focused on the girl, as they worried she had been injured by the recoil. It wasn’t until a shooting range colleague ran over to Vacca that the family realized as the girl lost control of the Uzi the shooting range instructor had been hit.
The family, said to be from New Jersey, had been in Las Vegas on vacation and took a shuttle about 60 miles to the Last Stop range. The family, consisting of the parents, the girl, her sister and a brother, went on a monster truck ride and headed out to the range. Little more has been said about why the family decided to have the 9-year-old handle the Uzi, and nothing more specific about her siblings or their ages has been revealed.
The girl’s father first handled the Uzi and after a few shots Vacca worked with the girl. He showed her a stance and helped her fire off a few shots, then he stepped back and let her manage the gun on her own. She fired, but the recoil shifted the weapon upward and Vacca was hit in the head. She dropped the gun and held her shoulder and then it was discovered that Vacca had been shot.
No charges will be filed in the case. County prosecutors indicate that Vacca was probably the most negligent one involved as he let the 9-year-old hold the gun without enough training. The parents, and of course the child, said not to be criminally culpable. The instructor’s family says that they believe this was a tragic accident and they don’t want the girl’s life to revolve around it.
As ABC News notes, the family’s statement indicates that this was supposed to be “a unique and brief excursion from their summer vacation” and it turned into a tragedy. The incident has sparked debate about how young is too young to be handling guns, especially the powerful type used in this instance. The Bullets and Burgers gun range where this happened currently allows anyone over the age of eight to shoot automatic weapons as long as the instructor thinks they are suitable.
Will the reports that the girl’s Uzi was too much for her, along with the tragedy of Vacca’s death, change people’s opinions on this topic? Or is the incident with the girl’s Uzi shooting range instructor just an accident that will lead to more talk but no action?
[Image via Raw Story]