On Thursday, WDAM reported that a toddler in St. Louis, Missouri has died after accidentally shooting himself in the head.
"Police initially said the boy was 2 years old but later clarified he was 1 year old," reported Emily Van de Riet. "The boy was barely conscious and barely breathing when paramedics rushed him to the hospital where he later died from his injuries."
According to the report, child abuse and crisis response experts were summoned to the scene.
“This is just a terrible tragedy that should have never happened," said St. Louis Police Lt. Co. Michael Sack. "Guns are inherently dangerous. There are a number of them in our community. All of us who own firearms or who have firearms must be responsible with their care and their use.”
Missouri has highly permissive gun laws. It was one of the early states to adopt a "permitless carry" law in 2016, automatically allowing anyone qualified to purchase a gun to carry a concealed weapon in most places without training or licensing.
Children dying in accidents involving unsecured firearms are a common occurrence in the U.S. In June, an eight-year-old Florida boy fatally shot his infant sister with a gun belonging to his father. In Detroit, a five-year-old boy playing with a gun fatally shot himself in the face in August. There have been numerous near misses as well; in Corpus Christi, Texas this week, a four-year-old brought a loaded handgun to school, triggering alarms as it came just months after the massacre at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde.