REDDING, Calif. (AP) — A 78-year-old Northern California man is facing gun charges after authorities say his 3-year-old great-grandson accidentally shot himself with a handgun.

Shasta County District Attorney Steve Carlton told the Record Searchlight that John Edward Stepp faces a misdemeanor charge of failing to properly store a firearm that allowed the boy access to the loaded 9-millimeter gun.

Carlton termed the shooting as “100 percent avoidable.”

Investigators say Grady Stepp shot himself with a gun at his great-grandfather’s home outside Shingletown on Feb. 13, causing damage to both lobes of his brain.

The boy was in fair condition at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento.

If convicted, Edward Stepp could be sentenced to up to a year in jail and fines.

It’s not known if has retained an attorney, and no court date has been set.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (4)
  1. Sad One Tonight says:

    This was just a very sad accident… Yes, very stupid of him not to have the gun secured and put away. And I bet you that the Grandfather wishes that he was the one who was shot. What a horrible thing to have to live with for the rest of your life.

    He will be dealing with this until the day he dies.

    I will be praying for that baby that he will come out of this with little trouble. I will also pray that he will not suffer any brain damage as a result.

    Now watch this boy to grow up to be the next Einstein….

    I will also, pray for the Grandfather. That he may find some peace, at some point and that this will be a lesson for others to not take gun safety so lightly.

    I am all for owning guns, but, you have to be responsible.

  2. Millie says:

    This is such a sad and devastating news for the little boy. And shame on great grandfather. If I have the decencey to pick up a ciggeret butt to avoid my two year old from eatting it. He could have done the same with the gun

  3. Zzzzz says:

    Stupid and guns don’t mix!!

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