TAYLORSVILLE — A teenage boy was taken to the hospital Friday after he was shot accidentally by his father at a shooting range.
Unified Police say the man and his son were at Doug's Shoot N' Sport, 4926 S. Redwood Road. The man was attempting to put a loaded gun into a case when it went off. A bullet struck his 16-year-old son.
Ken Brownlee was near the man and his son at the range and saw the accident happen.
"You heard the discharge of the firearm," Brownlee said. "He screamed. He was in shock and panic, didn't know exactly what to do."
The bullet shot through the case, hitting the boy in his abdomen and finger.
"I didn't know what was going on at first, I heard a scream," said Bridger Brownlee, Ken Brownlee's son.
Ken Brownlee said he stepped in to help.
"I went out with the young man to kind of keep him calm and conscious once he was on the floor," he said.
The range's manager, Dave Larsen, said no employees patrol the range. Their customers are typically trained in weapons safety.
"(The) guy learned an easy lesson the hard way," Larsen said. "He became, I believe, a little complacent or a little mistaken in his practices, and his gun accidentally went off and hit his son."
The teen is expected to make a full recovery. Police say this is a good reminder for anyone operating a weapon.
"Practice as much handgun safety as (you) can when handling firearms or handguns," Taylorsville Police Sgt. John Cooper said. "Just treat every firearm as if it's always loaded."
Ken Brownlee said that's exactly the lesson he hopes his two boys learn from this. "It's scary," he said. "It's a real reality check."
Larsen said the man called his wife on the phone and apologized profusely. The man was able to speak to his son in the hospital and apologized to him as well.
Police have ruled it an accident, and say they don't plan to file any charges.