A mother, whose 6-year-old son seriously wounded his mistress in January with a firearm, was charged Monday in the case that shocked the United States.
Deja Taylor is being charged with “parental failure” and “endangering a minor by leaving a loaded firearm within reach,” the Newport News, VA (East) District Attorney announced in a statement.
“My client will go to trial later this week,” his lawyer, James Ellenson, told AFP.
Attorney General Howard Gwinn added that his investigation was incomplete and that he had appointed a “special grand jury”—a committee of citizens with broad investigative powers—to review the apparatus, the school’s security.
If that grand jury “determines that other people are criminally responsible, it can adopt other indictments,” according to Mr. Gwenn, who gave up prosecuting the shooter a month ago due to his young age.
On January 6, this elementary school kid took a Taurus 9mm pistol, which his mother had bought legally, from his school bag and shot his teacher, Abigail Zwirner, 25.
The young woman had been hospitalized for two weeks with injuries to the hand and chest. After the student’s age, the case was shocking because the police called the shooting “premeditated.”
In a press release published shortly after the tragedy, his parents confirmed that their firearm was kept in a “safe” location and that their son “suffers from an acute disability” that requires special care.
At the beginning of April, Abigail Zwirner filed a civil complaint against the school’s administration, which accuses them of ignoring warnings about this student’s violent behavior. She is claiming $40 million in damages.
The United States, where nearly 400 million guns are in circulation, is regularly subjected to school shootings. The latest tragedy occurred at the end of March in Nashville, where three nine-year-old students and three adults were killed at a small Christian school.
But it is very rare that the shooters are so young. “Only” about fifteen children under 10 have shot in schools since the 1970s, according to database researcher David Redman, a reference on the subject.
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