Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:April 10th, 2013 08:14 EST
6-Year-Old Brandon Holt Shot Dead With A .22 Rifle By An Unidentified 4-Year-Old In Toms River, NJ!

6-Year-Old Brandon Holt Shot Dead With A .22 Rifle By An Unidentified 4-Year-Old In Toms River, NJ!

By John G. Kays

6-Year-old Brandon Holt (from Toms River, New Jersey, which is 70 miles south of Manhattan)) was shot in the head with a .22 rifle by a yet unidentified 4-year-old boy neighbor, Monday night and died at 5 PM on Tuesday. 

The exact circumstances of the shooting are still not completely clear, but we do know the two boys were playing near Brandon`s home, when for unknown reasons, the 4-year-old retrieved a loaded .22 caliber rifle from his parents house, for use in whatever game it was they were playing.

Brandon was in a toy vehicle when the other boy shot him; press coverage didn`t suggest anyone was a direct eyewitness. The Asbury Park Press does report that the father of the boy who did the shooting immediately secured the weapon after the shooting, but the damage had already been done. 

This same NJ news source also reports that this family has several members in law enforcement in Ocean; this is ironic and reminds me of what happened in Lebanon, Tennessee over the weekend.

The Asbury Park Press also reports that New Jersey has a gun law statute that states: "it is a criminal offense, punishable by a fine and imprisonment, for an adult to leave a loaded firearm within easy access to a minor. "

This sure seems to describe what has happened here in Toms River on Monday. I should point out, however, local authorities will have to determine who`s the owner of the rifle in question, and whether it was properly registered.

Yet still, with it looking as if this unnamed family was directly associated with law enforcement, it doesn`t make much sense that they had loaded firearms lying around, where a child could easily get their hands on these weapons. 

This appears to be the case here, when the 4-year-old simply ran into his house, grabbed the firearm with no problem, and brought it out to play with in some kind of game; but we have to ask, did the boy know this was real gun, or did he think it was merely a toy?

Did he fire it intentionally, or did he accidentally discharge the .22 rifle? An intentional scenario is more probable; how could the rifle fire without him pressing the trigger, unless he dropped it or something? 

While it doesn`t look as if there were any eyewitnesses to the shooting, whether it was an accident or intentional (within the context of the unidentified game the youngsters were playing), many neighbors did see what the police were taking out of the family`s house, who were apparently the object of the probe into the `unusual accident.`

That is, one neighbor saw police bring out at least 11 guns from this home, while another neighbor, who was watching this nightmare unfold, saw police bring out 10 firearms. Whether it`s 10 or 11, that`s a lot of guns to have at your home! 

Why did these people need to have so many guns? Testimonies from neighbors, who have lived in this Toms River suburb in New Jersey for quite a while, are saying (to the press) that this has been a peaceful community, until this incident came along.

This family (with so many guns) had only moved to Toms River a few months ago; it`s reported they came from a farm in Jackson, NJ and did quite a bit of hunting. But still? Odd also, is no one seems to have heard the shot. 

But most important of all, why weren`t the guns locked up? Brandon Holt is dead now because someone was irresponsible with lethal firearms. Who keeps loaded weapons lying around at their home? Is the NRA responsible for this new wave of gun-nut rights` assertion, this aggressive behavior?