A Christmas gift allegedly turned ugly last week, when a young child was given a toy pellet gun. Unfortunately, the boy (with his new present) shot his cousin who is Autistic. Christopher Fred Cady, age 39, then took away the gun from the child who shot his autistic cousin. According to the news story reported in The Miami Herald, Cady then shot the boy to show the boy how it felt. While the boy was definitely wrong for shooting a helpless and defenseless autistic child, Mr. Cady was not justified in shooting the offending child in the chest to show the offending child how it felt.
According to the St. Lucie, Florida Sheriff’s Department, Cady has been charged with cruelty toward a child without great harm. Read more about this incident at Man accused of using pellet gun on boy as a lesson.
It is not clear what Cady’s relationship was to the children in question, or if either of the children were seriously hurt by the pellet gun shots. What is clear is that the child was either too young or too irresponsible to be given any type of gun for a Christmas present. Even “toy” pellet guns can cause serious harm and children should not be allowed to play with them without strict adult supervision.
Of course, Mr. Cady will be entitled to the services of a Public Defender or a private criminal defense lawyer as to these charges. Witness statements will be taken and reviewed. Mr. Cady will also have the opportunity to present a defense and / or explanations for the events or incidents reported.
If a child is injured as a result of the actions or inactions of another person or child, it is important for parents to know the legal rights of the injured child. A consultation with a child injury lawyer can answer many questions including what laws and statutes apply, the availability of liability insurance, and responsibility for payment of medical bills and other related damages.