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SEATTLE, Wash. (CBS Local) — A pregnant woman was accidentally shot in the face by her 3-year-old son Saturday after the boy found a gun hidden under a mattress.
The 27-year-old woman, who was eight months pregnant, was laying on the bed watching TV with her boyfriend in their Seattle apartment when she was shot, authorities say.
The boyfriend, who is the father of the child, told deputies he had moved the gun from a higher location and placed it between the mattress and box spring Friday night after hearing some noises outside their home.
The child, who turned 4 on Sunday, the day after the shooting, “found a handgun that was unsecured there and he grabbed it, and before anyone knew what happened, heard a pop sound. And the mom was shot on her face area,” Sgt. Ryan Abbott of the King County Sheriff’s Office told CBS affiliate KIRO.
Family members say the victim was conscious and talking after the shooting.
“She was shot but she’s doing OK,” said Wendy, who declined to share her last name.
Neighbors say they were horrified by the incident.
“This is devastating and I pray his mom is OK,” said Treasure Nickles, a neighbor who said she frequently saw the mom’s kids playing outside.
“Whoever owns that gun should be responsible,” said September, a neighbor who declined to share her last name.
The boy’s father told deputies he borrowed the gun from a relative for protection. The sheriff’s office said the gun came back “clean,” meaning it was not stolen or tied to any crimes.
Under a new state law, gun owners could face criminal charges for not safely storing a gun, but it doesn’t go into effect until July 1.