Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store

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MERRILVILLE, Indiana - An Indiana woman is in critical but stable condition after her 3-year-old daughter accidentally shot her with a gun her father left in the car.

Police in Merrillville say two small children were waiting in the car with their mother while their father shopped inside a thrift store when the shooting happened Tuesday afternoon.

Witnesses described the scene outside Plato's Closet saying the father was inside a dressing room, while the mother and the little girl were outside in the car with a baby.

"There was blood flowing all from her stomac, just coming out like water, like a faucet and I screamed, 'someone call 911!'" witness Hadassah Zirkle said.

Detective Sgt. James Bogner, with the Merrilville Police said the little girl had no idea what she had done. "She was very scared. Just a beautiful little girl was put in a really bad situation today."

Chief Joe Petruch with the Merrilville Police spoke on his feeling that more training should be required for those who obtain a license to carry. "For a hunter to go out and hunt in the state of Indiana you have to have a 3-day hunter safety course to go get a hunting license. But in the state of Indiana, you can apply for a limited license to carry a handgun and you go through no training which I think is wrong."
 
Merrilville Police say the couple came from Michigan City to visit Planned Parenthood.

Police say the mother, who is a few weeks pregnant, is 21-year-old Shaneque Thomas. The father, Menzo Brazien, is being held on child endangerment charges. The children are in protective services.

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