CHICAGO — A 5-year-old boy who was struck in the face last year by a stray bullet fired during a drive-by shooting accidentally shot himself in the hand this week with a gun his father had obtained illegally, Chicago police said Wednesday.
Kavan Collins found the gun under a mattress in an upstairs bedroom and shot himself Tuesday evening in the finger, police said.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said the boy's father was taken into custody and was being questioned about how he came to possess a weapon with a defaced serial number — something that is commonly done to illegal guns to make them more difficult to trace.
Guglielmi said it was likely the father would be charged with felony counts related to the possession of the gun and child endangerment. Police did not release the man's name because he had not yet been charged, but they said he has a criminal record.
The child was listed in good condition at Comer Children's Hospital — the same hospital the boy was taken to in June 2016 when he was shot in the face as he and his mother walked down the street on the city's South Side.
The boy's mother, D'Antignay Brashear, told The Associated Press last year that she was holding the boy's hand when she heard the sound of gunfire and looked down to see a bullet had fractured her son's jaw and shattered some teeth before it went out his other cheek.
"I don't know how to explain it to him," the mother told the AP for a story last July about children who are victims of Chicago's gun violence. "How do you tell a kid, 'Oh, you got shot.'"
Police said a 28-year-old woman inside a residence was also struck in the shooting, which happened when someone fired from a passing vehicle. Police said neither the woman nor Kavan were the intended target.