WEATHERFORD, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Parker County Sheriff’s investigators arrested a man following a shooting incident which resulted in an injury to his toddler son.
Sheriff Larry Fowler said deputies were called to Palo Pinto General Hospital emergency room around 10:30 a.m., Saturday, April 21.
Deputies arrived to find a 4-year-old boy who had suffered a gunshot wound to the left calf.
The father of the child, Joshua Daniel Plumlee, 35, reported he and his children were in a bedroom of their home on Young Road in Millsap, and he left a .36 caliber black powder revolver on a nightstand or dresser in a holster.
Plumlee told investigators he turned away from the gun and the child crawled off the bed, got the gun, crawled back onto the bed and shot himself. P
The Sheriff’s Office said Plumlee said he turned around when he heard the shot and saw the child had the weapon in his lap with blood coming from his leg. Plumlee then took the child to the hospital.
Another 6-year-old child was in the room at the time of the shooting but was not injured.
Plumlee also told sheriff’ investigators assigned to the newly created Child Advocacy Center of Parker County that he has allowed both children to handle the weapon and showed them “how to operate it as a form of gun safety.”
The sheriff’s department said Plumlee could not give investigators a reason as to why the gun was unsecured and was accessible to children.
Investigators believe the child’s mother was in the shower at the time of the shooting and charges are not being pursued regarding the child’s mother.
The toddler was treated for the gunshot wound and was released from the hospital the following day.
Sheriff Fowler said according to Texas State Law, when a child is injured from an unsecured weapon due to a parent’s negligence, law enforcement must wait seven days before arresting the responsible parent or guardian.
Sheriff’s investigators said the child is expected to recover from the gunshot wound.
“We are fortunate that the bullet missed all major arteries, and there were no broken bones,” said Sheriff Fowler. “Proper gun safety education is essential when owning any weapon but is particularly crucial in homes where children reside.”