A 15-year-old Stockton teen is recovering after his 3-year-old brother shot him in the foot with a rifle belonging to their stepfather, a Stockton CHP officer.
Stockton police say the boys were playing hide-and-seek when the 3-year-old got ahold of his stepdad’s gun in a closet.
The incident happened around 8 p.m. Saturday. Police say other siblings took the teen to urgent care after he was shot with the .22 gauge rifle.
“I don’t think children should ever be able to have access to firearms,” said Jim Bertilacchi, who lives across the street.
Bertilacchi said he was shocked to hear this happened so close to home, even more so that it happened in the home of a CHP officer.
“With the training he has had, I’m sure he’s had a little bit more knowledge of the situation, and may have been able to not have this happen, and obviously, possibly prevent it, and have seen things like this happen,” Bertilacchi said.
“I was saddened by it. Certainly it’s concerning that something like that happens in any neighborhood,” said one woman who didn’t want to be identified by name, but who is an active member in the Hatcher’s Circle neighborhood watch.
The woman says the incident is a concern, especially, for a neighborhood like hers, which is full of kids.
“Safety’s got to be the No. 1 issue with all of this. It’s important that we consider that at all times,” she said.
While the incident raises safety concerns in the neighborhood, many are thankful the outcome wasn’t much worse.
The officer did speak to FOX40 off camera, saying it has been an emotional and stressful day since the incident happened.
The officer says his 15-year-old stepson is recovering well from the shooting.
Multiple attempts to reach both the Stockton CHP and the San Joaquin District Attorney’s Office, which is now handling the case, went unanswered.
It is unclear whether the DA’s office will file charges against the officer.