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'It's Almost Incomprehensible What You're Watching'

Indiana dad faces felony neglect charge after 4-year-old plays with loaded gun on live TV
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 17, 2023 9:25 AM CST

An Indiana man is facing a neglect charge after his 4-year-old son was captured playing with a loaded handgun on live TV. Footage from a doorbell camera, showing a diaper-clad boy pulling the trigger of the weapon in the hallway of an apartment complex, was aired Saturday on the Reelz show On Patrol: Live, featuring Beech Grove police. "I don't know how you can't watch that video, parent or nonparent, and not be shocked and disturbed," Beech Grove Deputy Police Chief Robert Mercuri tells WTHR. "It's almost incomprehensible what you're watching." The video shows the boy pointing the weapon down a flight of stairs and at apartment doors.

Nicole Summers, who called 911, said the boy also pointed the weapon at her son. "He just kept going, 'pow, pow, pow, pow,'" she tells WTHR. The boy's father, Shane Osborne, told officers that he was asleep when the boy slipped out of their apartment. He also said he didn't have a gun because of prior felonies. "I have never brought a gun into this house; if there is, it's my cousin's," he said on the show, per CNN. However, officers found a loaded semi-automatic handgun unsecured inside the apartment during a search, per NBC News. There were 15 rounds in the magazine, though none in the chamber, WTHR reports.

"We were so blessed that gun was not chambered, or that baby could be dead," Summers tells the outlet. In a statement, Beech Grove Mayor Dennis Buckley says he's "mortified" by the incident and "so thankful that no one was hurt, especially the young child." He also applauds police for their "quick action ... to secure the small child and the gun in question." Police say 45-year-old Osborne, arrested Saturday on suspicion of felony neglect of a dependent, could face additional charges. He's due in court on Tuesday. The boy is now in the care of his mother, per WTHR. (More guns stories.)

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