INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — An Indianapolis man was arrested and charged with two felony counts after his daughters were injured in an accidental shooting, police announced Thursday.
Christopher Davis, 29, faces two counts of neglect of a dependent resulting in serious bodily injury in connection with the Sept. 6 incident at his east side home.
Authorities determined Davis’ 5-year-old daughter found his loaded, unsecured shotgun on the floor in front of his bed and accidentally pulled the trigger, shooting off the tip of her thumb and striking her 2-year-old sister in the leg, according to a probable cause affidavit obtained by News 8.
The girls’ injuries were not life-threatening. However, the 2-year-old could face lifelong complications. She underwent five surgeries within two weeks of the shooting to repair nerve, bone and tissue damage, police said, and had a “10% chance of walking normally.”
Davis had left the children with his girlfriend and mother at their home in the 3000 block of North Colorado Avenue while he went to the store for milk, according to the affidavit.
His girlfriend knew he kept a gun in his bedroom but wasn’t aware it was loaded, she told detectives.
She and Davis’ mother reported hearing a gunshot when they were sitting in the living room; the children were “playing and jumping around” unsupervised in their father’s bedroom, they said.
Davis and his girlfriend claimed he kept a gun for protection because of recent incidents including threats from his “baby mama,” a robbery and vehicle arson, according to charging documents.
At least three neighbors who spoke with News 8 corroborated their story about the mother of Davis’ children setting his car on fire.
Brandon Hardiman, a neighbor who witnessed Davis’ arrest, slammed what he called “careless” parenting. He and his 4-year-old son live several houses away from Davis on Colorado Avenue.
“[Bullets] could have hit my son,” Hardiman told News 8. “As a parent, [I feel it’s] careless; reckless.”
Indianapolis police urged gun owners with children and young guests to take extra precautions.
“Gun safety with children is something that concerns everyone,” a police spokesperson said Thursday in an emailed statement. “Always keep firearms locked up and out of reach and sight of children. As a community, we need to work together to educate children on the importance of never touching a gun and to tell an adult immediately if they see one.”
Davis is scheduled to appear Monday in a Marion County court, according to online court records.
Attorneys for Davis could not be reached for comment.