An Ohio cop has not been charged with a crime after his two-year-old son somehow got a hold of his department-issued gun and fatally shot himself in the head Thursday morning.
Cleveland police have identified the cop as Jose “Tony” Pedro, a 54-year-old cop on the force since 1993, but have not stated how the shooting occurred.
They are calling it an “accidental shooting” instead of an act of negligence by having left the gun within reach of the toddler.
In October, a judge sentenced Cleveland resident Ricardo Sims, 27, to two-and-half years in prison after he left a gun in his son’s reach by hiding it underneath the couch where his girlfriend’s three-year-old son was able to grab it to shoot and kill his one-year-old brother, Braylon Robinson.
Sims and his girlfriend Shanee Robinson were both charged with involuntary manslaughter, endangering children, reckless homicide and receiving stolen property.
In that case, after Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams went to the home where Braylon was shot, he promised to hold Sims and Robinson accountable for the boy’s death.
“It’s a sad day for Cleveland. A 1-year-old child lost his life,” Chief Williams told reporters outside of the home during a press conference where he described the gun at Robinson’s home as “untended” and stating charges would likely be brought against the couple.
Chief Williams blasted gun culture during the press conference.
“This is a senseless loss of life for this city again, and it’s directly related to guns,” Williams told reporters. “We need to really take a hard look at the things we’re doing out there on the state, local and the national level to get some of these guns out of our communities, because nothing good ever happens.”
In a separate incident during the same month, a six-month-old girl was fatally shot in the chest from an apartment building as her mother was driving in the car with two other people.
Chief Williams broke down in tears as he spoke out about the shooting and said enough was enough, according to Fox8.com.
“We will stay on this as long as it takes. We want bodies in jail tonight for this crime.”
In Thursday’s shooting, the toddler’s mother was home with the boy’s older brother, although it’s not clear where they were located inside the home or how the boy was able to get his hands on his dad’s pistol or why the mother did not call paramedics.
Officers and emergency personnel responded to the boy’s home after his older brother alerted Sonya Hobbs, a neighbor, to call police.
Hobbs called 911 after seeing the aftermath of the horrific scene, but did not witness the shooting.
“I was leaving out my back door and I heard somebody saying somebody call the police. He was hollering ‘Call 911, my brother just shot himself.’ He was just screaming and hollering. I got my phone and called 911.”
Hobbs, who was described as emotional when she reported the scene to dispatchers, said the child suffered a gunshot wound to the head.
“When I went in there, I seen that baby. He was only two-years-old. I seen that baby laying on the floor,” Hobbs said.
The toddler, who locals are calling Dominique, was rushed to a local hospital where doctors performed surgery, but later died.
Although the department stated an investigation was ongoing, Chief Williams has not made any comments indicating he intends to pursue charges against the cop
“Unfortunately it took the life of a beautiful two-year-old little boy, but all we can do is pray and support them and be there for them. He’s been a police officer since 1993 a very well respected police officer on the force. It’s fate I guess that’s all we can say,” Carlisha Conner a friend of the cop told Cleveland19.
Negligence is nothing new when it comes to cops and their department-issued service weapons.
In May, we reported about San Diego cop Neal “Nick” Browder who was searching the home of a probationer when he “accidentally” fired his gun, sending a bullet through a wall and into a baby’s crib.
Fortunately, the crib was empty at the time.
San Diego police placed Browder on a desk job after the incident.
Last month, we reported about North Carolina cop Misty Michelle Flowers who negligently shot her daughter while showing her department-issued service weapon to friends at her home during a Halloween party, sending a bullet through a wall, striking her 11-year-old daughter in the next room.
Flowers was fired.
“I find gross negligence and the disregard for the safety of others was displayed in the incident Saturday night and therefore Officer Flowers was terminated today,” said Sheriff David Carpenter.
In October, a Fresno police officer in California shot and killed a fellow officer in a negligent discharge while discussing gun safety inside a police building.
Cleveland police have not indicated whether or not the unnamed cop will be fired or charged with negligence.
But a reasonable person would say there’s not justifiable reason why a 2-year-old should be able to get a hold of a loaded gun.