Tuesday, December 11, 2012
4 year old boy shot his 2 year old brother with parent's gun
two-year-old brother with a
handgun as they played in their
parents' bedroom found the loaded
weapon stored behind a pillow by
the bed, it has emerged.
Neegnco Xiong was playing with his
siblings while their mother cleaned
downstairs at their Minneapolis home
on Wednesday, when his parents heard
a loud bang.
They ran upstairs to find the youngster
lying on his front, shaking and
struggling to breathe. His family and
paramedics tried to give him CPR, but
he died in the ambulance on the way to
His father, Kao Xiong, told the
Minneapolis Star Tribune that he had
bought the gun for safety after a series
of nearby break-ins and had thought
the gun was adequately hidden in the
'My heart is broke,' Xiong, 33, said.
'This changes my life. I can't imagine
this terrible thing would happen to me.
I wish I would be a new person.'
The couple has not been charged in
what police branded a 'horrible
accident' but it is illegal in Minnesota to
store a loaded firearm where a child
can access it.
Police will present their investigation to
the Hennepin County attorney, who will
decide how to proceed. The couple's
three other sons have been temporarily
places in child protective custody.
Xiong, who works as a vocational
rehabilitation counselor, said he first
acquired a gun seven or eight years
ago for his own protection after
someone broke into his house while he
And last year, he bought a semi-
automatic Tokarev pistol for safety and
would often carry it with him when he
went jogging late at night following
nearby car break-ins and a shooting.
He said the gun was behind the
headboard in his room, while other
guns in the home were locked away.
After the boy was taken away in the
ambulance and officers stayed with the
parents, Xiong said he turned to his
four-year-old son and said: 'Why did
you do this to your brother? He's dead.'
The boy was crying, as was the officer,
he said. But he added that he knows it
was not his son's fault and hopes he
cannot remember the incident.
Police questioned the couple of
Wednesday and the children were
expected to be returned home on
Thursday, the Star Tribune reported.
Minneapolis police Sergeant William
Palmer called the shooting 'a horrible
accident' and released a statement
calling on gun owners to safely store
weapons, especially if they have
'The Minneapolis Police Department
wants to remind everyone who has a
firearm in their home that it is their
responsibility to lock up firearms to
prevent tragic accidents from
occurring,' he said.
He added to Twincities.com: 'Very
clearly, a four-year-old should never
have access to a firearm, loaded or
Minnesota law states that a four-year-
old cannot be charged with a crime.
Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device from MTN