An 8-year-old and an Uzi

It kind of surprises me that this story emerges from outside Boston, MA:

December 5, 2008

Police Chief Among 4 Indicted in Boy’s Death at Gun Show

BOSTON — A Massachusetts police chief, two Connecticut men and a gun club were indicted Thursday in the case of an 8-year-old boy killed by a submachine gun he was firing at a gun show.

The boy, Christopher K. Bizilj of Ashford, Conn., accidentally shot himself in the head while taking his turn with a 9-millimeter Micro Uzi on Oct. 26 in Westfield, Mass. He was accompanied by his father, an emergency room doctor, who, the authorities say, had chosen the Uzi for him to fire.

Massachusetts law generally makes it legal for children to fire a weapon if they have parental consent and are supervised by a certified instructor. But that does not apply to machine guns, which may not be fired by anyone under 18.

“There is no exception that would allow a machine gun to be furnished to an 8-year-old, with or without parental consent,” said William M. Bennett, the Hampden County district attorney, who obtained the indictments from a grand jury.

The accident occurred at the Machine Gun Shoot and Firearms Expo, held at the Westfield Sportsman’s Club. The show was sponsored by COP Firearms and Training, which is owned by Edward B. Fleury, the police chief in Pelham, a western Massachusetts town of some 1,400 people about 30 miles from Westfield.

More details:

At a news conference where he announced the charges, Mr. Bennett said Dr. Bizilj (pronounced bah-SEEL) had chosen the Micro Uzi for Christopher to shoot because it was small and, the father thought, would therefore be easier to handle.

“He did not realize its small size actually made it more dangerous,” Mr. Bennett said, adding, “Although it might appear a heavier or longer weapon would be more dangerous, the small size of the weapon together with the rapid rate of fire made it more likely that an 8-year-old would lose control and the muzzle of the weapon would come close to his face, which is what happened here.”

As he fired, Mr. Bennett told The A.P., Christopher was supervised only by a 15-year-old.

Easy mistake to make, I suppose.  Those Micro Uzis look perfect for little kids.  Can you get a Bratz Baby[z] with a Micro Uzi?

OK, I guess this blog is starting to turn into a Concerned Parent forum, I better come up with some other topics…

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