HOUSTON - Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez is asking the greater Houston area to pray for a deputy’s stepson.
Investigators say the 4-year-old boy shot himself in the head Tuesday inside the deputy’s home.
Right now, it is unclear if the gun was the deputy’s service weapon.
KHOU 11 has learned at least one parent, another adult, and several other children were inside at the time.
“Obviously, they’re extremely distraught and heartbroken,” said Sheriff Gonzalez. “But we all remain prayerful.”
Gonzalez tweeted updates in the shooting’s aftermath. He said Wednesday morning that he spent much of the night at the hospital with the family.
“The 4-year-old went through an extensive operation, several hours,” said Gonzalez. “He came out of it and continues to be in serious condition, battling for his life, so it’s extremely difficult.”
Gonzalez said the sheriff’s office is supporting the family while an independent investigation continues.
Right now, they’re trying to determine what led up to the shooting and how the boy got his hands on a loaded gun.
The shooting came just two days after 2-year-old Christopher Williams, Jr. of Houston lost his life after finding a loaded gun on a couch and shooting himself.
“We see too many situations where young children, in particular, are getting hurt and losing their lives,” said Gonzalez.
Several neighbors told us they recently attended the deputy’s son’s 4th birthday party. They’re praying he gets to celebrate another one.
Prosecutors will ultimately decide if charges will be filed.
Meanwhile, the sheriff and others continue to stress the importance of gun locks and gun safes, some of which are available for free through the Houston Police Department.
Wednesday afternoon, the Harris County Precinct 1 Constable’s Office announced it will be giving out safety kits including cable-style gun locks for free.
The department is partnering up with Project ChildSafe and will give out the firearms safety kits to the public at 1302 Preston Street on the third floor. They will also be given out during community outreach events.
All Precinct 1 deputies in patrol will have free gun locks available to citizens as well. The locks fit on most handguns and are free to anyone who needs one, says Constable Alan Rosen.
“It’s just important for adults to take the necessary steps to protect children from firearms,” Constable Rosen said.
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