LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — A toddler who got a hold of an unsecured gun while left alone in a car died in the hospital on Wednesday night due to injuries from a self-inflicted gunshot, according to police.
The 2-year-old boy was injured Wednesday after getting hold of an unsecured gun while he was left alone in a car. Following the shooting, the toddler was flown to a children’s hospital in Ann Arbor where he was in critical condition until he died Wednesday evening.
The Lansing Police Department reminded the public that instances like these are preventable. They add that they’ll continue to emphasize the importance of safely securing guns, so nobody has to experience what happened Tuesday afternoon.
“Both adults exited the vehicle, leaving the child in there with an unsecured firearm,” Lansing Police Chief Ellery Sosebee said. “The child found the firearm and it went off.”
It was a shocking scene on Dunckel Road in Lansing near a Sunoco gas station, where strangers jumped into action to help the little boy — including people who work next door, hoping they could do enough to save him.
“My employee was at the gas station, she was purchasing some stuff and she saw what happened. She saw the child affected and she ran over, applied pressure to the area of the wound and she did what she could,” said Thomas Farrington, manager of a nearby business.
It’s unclear why, but one 44-year-old man ran from the scene Tuesday. He was later located and taken into custody by Lansing police.
The police chief also said he has a message for the community.
“This just emphasizes the need to make sure that anytime that anybody has a weapon that they legally own, they need to make sure that it’s taken care of and secured when it’s not in their possession,” Sosebee said. “Do you want to be responsible for somebody like a 2-year-old child, the most innocent of the innocent, to get injured or die because you just didn’t secure your firearm?”
Investigators are still looking for the gun involved.