Authorities in Hollister, Florida, are investigating how a 4-year-old boy was able to get ahold of a .45-caliber handgun and accidentally shoot his mother in the back as she drove down the street Tuesday afternoon.
A Putnam County sheriff’s deputy who happened to be on patrol in the area around 3:00 p.m. noticed a truck with a horse trailer pulled over to the side of the road. The deputy slowed to see if the driver needed assistance, then saw the woman, Jamie Gilt, 31, motioning toward him as if she needed help. Inside the truck, a young child was crying uncontrollably.
“Her young 4-year-old son came into possession of a handgun inside the vehicle and accidentally shot her through the driver’s seat,” said Capt. Joseph Wells.
The bullet traveled through the driver’s seat and struck Gilt in the back and abdomen. She was transported to the hospital, where she was last listed in stable condition. The child is currently in the care of his grandmother, but the Department of Children and Families are now involved in the investigation.
The gun, which was legally owned and Gilt showed off in a Twitter post in January, describing it as her “new toy,” was found on the back floorboard of the truck.
Got to play with my new toy today! Time to clean it! pic.twitter.com/1lkYo8b3sh
— jamie gilt (@jamiegilt) January 24, 2015
Authorities now have many unanswered questions. “Those questions center around how is the firearm secured? Where was it carried in the vehicle? And exactly how did the young boy come in possession of the firearm?” Wells said. “I’d like to take the opportunity to remind everybody that the Florida statute is specific, and it does state that the adult household member or the child’s guardian is responsible for taking all measures necessary to keep firearms out of the reach of young people.”
No charges have been filed at this time, but Wells indicated that could change, as the investigation is ongoing.
[ News 4 Jax ]