New Mexico couple shot by their 3-year-old face felony child abuse charges
Two Albuquerque, New Mexico parents face felony child abuse charges after their 3-year-old son shot them with an unsecured handgun.
According to the Albuquerque Journal, Justin Reynolds and Monique Villescas were charged by the Albuquerque Police Department after both adults were injured on Saturday, the same day Villescas purchased a new .45-caliber Smith and Wesson pistol.
The Journal quoted APD spokesman Simon Drobik, who said, “With Second Amendment rights comes responsibility, and these parents obviously practiced no responsibility at all.”
Drobik also said that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms is investigating whether Reynolds, a convicted felon, was violating the law by possessing a firearm.
Reynolds and Villescas — who is pregnant — bought the weapon on Saturday and took it back to the motel room where they were staying with the 3-year-old and his younger sister, 2. Villescas left the pistol loaded and ready to fire in her purse, which was resting atop the room’s mini-fridge, approximately 3 feet from the floor.
A police incident report said that Villescas was lying on the motel room bed at about 2 p.m. with Reynolds standing and facing her when the 3-year-old boy lunged for his mother’s purse.
As one detective wrote in the report, the toddler “discovered the firearm and armed himself.”
The child fired one shot which penetrated Reynolds’ buttock and exited, passing through Villescas’ upper right arm and embedding itself in the wall behind her.
Reynolds told KOB-TV, “It was like if I was to get up shake your hand and sat back down. That’s how fast it happened. All of a sudden we heard a gun go off and the next minute I realized my girlfriend was bleeding. Then I sat down and realized I was shot too.”
Paramedics took Reynolds and Villescas to a local hospital. Reynolds was treated and released, but physicians are keeping Villescas under observation until she delivers her baby.
Both parents were charged this week with felony child abuse without great bodily harm.
The Journal said that Reynolds is being held in the county jail on $15,000 bond.
Watch video about the shooting, embedded below: