MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Mobile Police are not looking to charge a 55-year-old grandmother after her 4-year-old grandchild got ahold of her gun and accidentally shot her inside a store Tuesday evening.
The shooting happened at America’s Thrift Stores in the Festival Centre off of Airport Boulevard.
MPD said the young girl found the gun in her grandmother’s purse before it went off. The bullet hit the woman in the leg. The grandmother was treated at a hospital and is expected to be okay.
Some people are wondering why the grandmother isn’t facing some sort of child endangerment charge for leaving her gun unattended. MPD said the grandmother is the victim in this case and believes this is a lesson learned situation.
WKRG spoke with Melissa Rankin, the owner of a firearms training business for women called “She’s a Pistol, LLC.” She believes this incident was tragic, but completely avoidable.
“You never want to place blame on someone, especially a victim of something like that, but let’s talk about safety,” said Rankin. “One, it should be in a holster in your purse. Two, your purse should hopefully be a cross body bag, because it’s less likely that you’ll take it off, put it down, or someone will pull it off of your body.”
Rankin also suggests that people who carry should never put their purse down if it has a pistol inside of it.
“Never leave your purse inside a grocery cart unattended,” said Rankin. “My kids growing up knew not to go digging in my purse for gum or candy. There’s nothing in Mom’s purse that she can’t get for you. So, ask.”
Rankin is thankful the situation didn’t end up worse than it did. Another safe option for people who want to carry a gun in their purse are bags that are designed for concealed carry.
The bags have a special compartment inside with a detachable holster in it. Most of them have locks.
Your pistol stays inside the holster with the safety on and locked up until you need it.
“You can bring it to the range and practice shooting from that position so you’re comfortable,” said Rankin.
Rankin, who has a law enforcement background, hosts three-hour trainings two Saturdays out of each month.
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