I think requiring gun owners to lock their guns around children is a no-brainer here. Negligence is negligence. You can’t expect a 10-year-old to understand the impact of what a gun can do, or properly handle one without training.
For example, keeping his booger-picker off the trigger when holding the weapon isn’t instinct. If he’s not taught even the most basic of safety measures, then how can such a young child be even remotely responsible for said action? It’s absurd to say a “10-year-old should know better.” How is he to know without being taught?
While I taught my kids at a young age about gun safety AND keep my weapons locked up (as a responsible parent should) that didn’t happen in this case.
There is no such thing as an accidental shooting as they can all be attributed to negligence in one form or another. Such as my nephew shooting himself in the foot is. The boy may not have even known the weapon was loaded. Then what?
Now, if the prospect of criminal charges existed, the father most likely would have been inclined to keep them locked up. But since there are no such laws, why bother?
I’m just thankful he didn’t grab a heavier gauge weapon which are also in the house. What if he would have shot himself with the .44 that sits on the nightstand? He might have blown his foot off.