Chicago police were called to the Disney Magnet School on Tuesday when a loaded gun accidentally fired into an 8-year-old boy’s backpack, injuring another student.
The 8-year-old brought the loaded gun to school after prosecutors said they found it under his mother’s bed.
Tatanina Kelly is now held accountable and charged with three misdemeanor counts of child endangerment.
“I’m not surprised,” said Harold Krent, a professor at Kent College of Law. “You can’t leave prescription drugs near young children, you can’t leave sharp objects and you certainly shouldn’t leave a loaded gun. It’s a recipe for disaster.”
Krent said child endangerment laws exist to protect those who are young and helpless. Kelly appeared in bond court on Wednesday, where a judge accused the 28-year-old mother of being “grossly negligent.”
“It’s not just a matter of parental responsibility, it’s a human responsibility,” Krent said.
Kelly’s defense attorney conceded the gun should have been locked up, but argued the incident was not something his client planned or did to deliberately violate the law.
But Judge Michael Hogan reminded Kelly that the incident could have ended in something much worse.
“We are inches, maybe inches away from a very different case and a very different tragedy,” Hogan said.
Despite having no criminal record and legal ownership of the gun, Kelly was held on $10,000 bond.
“The judge hopes people take this seriously and when they see it in the news, they take action to make sure the guns are protected,” Krent said.
The injured 7-year-old Disney student was taken to hospital in good condition. The bullet grazed the boy’s abdomen.
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