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Author Topic: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot  (Read 4186 times)

LittleLebowski

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Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« on: October 27, 2008, 09:59:59 AM »
  My heart goes out to the family.  Link

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 Valliere said.

The boy 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. Police called it a "self-inflicted accidental shooting."

The victim was taken to Baystate Medical Center where he died. His name was not released.

Although the death appears to be an accident, police and the Hampden district attorney's office were investigating, officials said.

The club said on its Web site that the event, run in conjunction with C.O.P Firearms and Training, is "all legal and fun." People will be allowed to fire weapons at vehicles, pumpkins and other targets, it said.

Officials with the private club and the firearms group could not be reached for comment. A message left on a club answering machine was not returned. The C.O.P. group's machine clicked off without taking a message.
 

The sportsman's club was founded in 1949 and describes itself on its Web site as an organization that promotes "the interest of legal sport with rod, gun, and bow and arrow, both directly and through training."

It has eight firing ranges as well as archery and fishing facilities located on 375 acres in Westfield, about 100 miles west of Boston.


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Thernlund

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2008, 11:01:33 AM »
Oh Christ.  It only takes one F-up to wreck 100 good deeds.  Someone F'd up here in a big way.

This will get used.  Watch.  :(

(I feel for the family.  I can't imagine going through something like this.  Brutal.)


-T.
Arizona  Arm yourself because no one else here will save you.  The odds will betray you, and I will replace you...

Feud

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2008, 11:12:26 AM »
Follow up information, the comments at the bottom are what one would expect.

xsquidgator

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2008, 11:16:32 AM »
Oh jeez.  I just heard about this from my cousin who lives in MA.  I gave him a 1 year NRA membership so that he'd get into the mindset that maybe the 2nd A applies to him, and I think it annoyed his kind of liberal wife.  This ain't going to help.

Thernlund

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2008, 11:23:29 AM »
Follow up information, the comments at the bottom are what one would expect.


By GEORGE GRAHAM
ggraham@repub.com

WESTFIELD - Police have identified the 8-year-old boy who died after accidentally shooting himself Sunday with an automatic weapon as Christopher Bizilj of Ashford, Conn.

The accident which occurred about 2 p.m. at the Westfield Sportsman's Club on Furrowtown Road, remains under investgation, Westfield Police Lt. Hipolito Nunez said Monday.

Witnesses told police the boy lost control of a fully automatic UZI he was shooting under the supervision of range officers at the club "when the self-inflicted accidental shooting occurred," police said in a statement.

He was taken to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield with serious head injuries. Police announced early Sunday evening that he had died.

Though Westfield police said, "it appears the incident was purely accidental," a combined investigation of local police and the office of Hampden County District Attorney William M. Bennett is underway.

"There's an investigation going on now involving both Westfield police and the state police assigned to my office," Bennett said Sunday night.

Nunez said the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has also joined the investigation.

Asked to comment on the advisability of an 8-year-old shooting an automatic weapon, Bennett said, "Once we have more information on what happened and how it happened, we'll be in a position to make public statements (on the incident)."

Efforts to reach club officers for comment Sunday were unsuccessful.

Witnesses said the boy "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," police said in the statement they released.

He was conscious and lying on the ground at the shooting range with a wound to the right side of his head when police and emergency medical technicians arrived at the scene, police said.

After first aid was administered, the youth, accompanied by his father, was taken to the hospital, police said.

The size of UZIs vary. Police did not say which model of the weapon the boy was firing.The weapon was originally designed for use by the Israeli military.

Ashford is about 29 miles east Hartford.

The Westfield Sportsman's Club, in association with COP Firearms & Training of Amherst, was conducting a machine gun shoot and firearms exposition this weekend, according to its promotional material for the event.

The advertisement includes the information that, "You will be accompanied to the firing line with a Certified Instructor to guide you."

Attendees under the age of 16 were admitted free, and free .22-caliber pistol and rifle shooting for adults and kids was offered, according to the promotional material.

The sportsman's club is a private, nonprofit organization incorporated in 1949 that has 375 acres with facilities that include eight firing ranges, as well as facilities for archery and fishing. As of July, it had nearly 1,200 members.

During a tour of the club in July, its officers pointed out the care taken to ensure safety at the firing ranges.

COP Firearms & Training operates machine gun shoots and provides firearms training and sales, as well as gunsmithing and other services.




-T.
Arizona  Arm yourself because no one else here will save you.  The odds will betray you, and I will replace you...

Klassh

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2008, 04:56:41 PM »
Look guys.

I started shooting when I was six with a .22 Taurus Revolver with my dad.

I can't imagine an 8 yearold handling a full auto UZI. 

Also, how in the world did they even GET a full-auto gun into MA?  Is that even legally possible?
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Beamish

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2008, 04:58:36 PM »
While this is a tragic event, this line from the story irritates me immensely:
"Asked to comment on the advisability of an 8-year-old shooting an automatic weapon..."

Well...what about the advisability of an 8 year old riding a motorcycle?  (Time to ban those Honda ads).  Or swimming?  Or playing sports?  An 8-year old can severely hurt themselves walking down the stairs.

I know of a girl who paralyzed at 8 years old from a gymnastics accident.

Accident - no matter how tragic - happen.  Nothing can heal the pain this family must be experiencing but the continued demonization of inanimate objects and voluntary pursuits is ludicrous.


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Mrs. Armoredman

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2008, 05:44:46 PM »
 Thats a terrible tradgey. Now what? Are they going to close down the club just because someone was in the wrong?  :o ??? ::)
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armoredman

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2008, 05:54:23 PM »
I personally knew a kid back in the 80s who rolled an ATC without a helmet, and was killed instantly, but they didn't ban ATCs.
This is an enormous tragedy that will be used by the anti-rights crowd to go after our most endangered firearms - NFA. And thanks to NFA '34, they know where they are, too. If BO makes president, expect them to disappear first.

Skunk Ape

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2008, 08:58:45 PM »
This story made me furious when I read it this morning.  I'm still furious.  Anyone that gives an automatic weapon to an eight-year-old and then fails to supervise the boy is guilty of criminal negligence!  There was no way that boy should have been shooting that gun without an adult's arms wrapped around him and bracing the weapon.  Just....dammit!

I go shooting with my girls.  Teaching kids to use guns safely is an obligation.  But when my kids are shooting my entire attention is focused on them and I am ready to step in and take control of the weapon in an instant.

I really don't want fluffwits like that representing me as a member of the gun culture.  The owner is lucky that I won't serve on the jury.
Get these bodies together...five or six of 'em, all laid out on the front of our ship. Put Book front and center, he's our friend and we should honor him. Kaylee, find that kid who's taking a dirt nap with baby Jesus, we need a hood ornament.

Thernlund

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2008, 09:19:32 PM »
Karma points for you Skunk.

Like I said, someone F'd right up.


-T.
Arizona  Arm yourself because no one else here will save you.  The odds will betray you, and I will replace you...

ridata

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2008, 10:43:21 PM »
Quote from: SkunkApe
I go shooting with my girls.  Teaching kids to use guns safely is an obligation.  But when my kids are shooting my entire attention is focused on them and I am ready to step in and take control of the weapon in an instant.
Heck, I went shooting with some high schoolers recently and I didn't get far enough away from them that they could point the muzzle anywhere outside the 45 degree range it should be pointed. Or else they would've..
With an 8 y/o and FA, I woudn't stand back and watch him shoot. As hso stated on THR about this incident, before I even let them shoot it FA with the magazine, I'd give the 2 and then a couple 3 round and then 4 round bursts so they can get the hang of it and you can see/feel how they do with it.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2008, 12:11:40 PM by ridata »
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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2008, 01:58:28 AM »
I get a feeling that the first to get blamed will be the UZI.  Even though it apparently served its function.  Adults are at fault for this tragic accident and I agree with the "letting a child drive a motorcycle" comparison.

That kid should have been shooting a red ryder or a .22
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Correia

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2008, 12:05:24 PM »
I've let kids that age shoot automatic weapons, however I'm physically holding onto them at the time to prevent this kind of thing.l


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Skunk Ape

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2008, 07:34:31 PM »
I read some more details on Fox today.  The weapon was, as I suspected, a Micro Uzi.  The barrel is short enough for a child to inadvertantly point it at his own head as the weapon climbs in recoil.

Dad was standing ten feet away taking a picture.  Who knows where the "certified instructor" was.  Possibly his attention was divided between multiple shooters. My rule when it comes to shooting with children is one supervising adult per shooting child.  I don't even take both kids to range at the same time anymore because I can't focus on one at the expense of the other and I cannot allow my attention to wander, even for a split second, from the child holding the gun. 

I can remember sitting in my grandfather's lap, steering his 1976 Delta '88 down a turnpike in Indiana when I was about eight years old.  It was a great experience.  That car later became my first car.

But while my hands were on the steering whell, so were his.  And his foot was on the accelerator.  What those men did was the equivalent of letting the boy drive the car down the turnpike while they were sitting in the passenger seat. 
Get these bodies together...five or six of 'em, all laid out on the front of our ship. Put Book front and center, he's our friend and we should honor him. Kaylee, find that kid who's taking a dirt nap with baby Jesus, we need a hood ornament.

North of 49th

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Re: Boy shoots self in head at machine gun shoot
« Reply #15 on: October 29, 2008, 05:56:00 AM »
You guys above me have said it all pretty much. I would say that was gross negligence on the part of the "supervising" parties. It seems relatively clear to me what happened. The boy fired and then the gun climbed up and so he held on tighter probably pulling the trigger more too. Crying shame as this is both a tragedy for the family and will put more ammo into the hands of the anti's.


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