CHAPARRAL, New Mexico - A Chaparral man's mother and own son were in critical condition as of Saturday night, after he accidentally shot them both, Dona Ana County Sheriff's Investigators said. The shooting happened around 11 a.m. in the 600 block of Luna Azul Drive.
Investigators are not identifying the man, but said, they are calling the shooting an accident because while he was cleaning a 9millimeter handgun, the trigger unexpectedly went off. A bullet pierced straight through his 4-year-old son and into the stomach of the boy's grandmother, investigators said.
"It's quite shocking, and scary at the same moment," Tanisha Guerra, who was visiting her boyfriend on Luna Azul Drive when she saw the neighbor's yard sale suddenly filled with emergency crews, said.
"It's sad to hear 'Oh, the child is going to the hospital because his father shot him,'" Guerra said. "For someone to be cleaning his gun, he shouldn't even be around anyone."
Others said it is common sense not to handle a gun around children.
"You have your son next to you and you're holding a gun...I think that is pretty obvious to be very careful," Benjamin Galvez, who lives a few houses down the street, said. "We never know if it was really an accident."
Investigators said the shooting does appear to be accidental at this time.
"How can someone be that not-smart, because it just doesn't make sense really," Guerra said.
Neighbors said accident or not, it is no excuse to risk the lives of those you love.
"People should learn from what they see to be more careful next time," Galvez said.
Investigators said, they cannot confirm whether or not the father owned the gun or was cleaning someone else's.
"I just hope that the child and the mother make it," Guerra said.
He has been questioned but no charges have been filed, investigators said.