MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) — The mother and father of a 6-year-old eastern Indiana boy who fatally shot his 5-year-old sister in their home were each charged Tuesday with four counts of neglect, a prosecutor said.
If convicted of the most serious charge — level one felony neglect of a dependent resulting in death — Jacob Grayson, 28, and his 27-year-old wife, Kimberly Grayson, could each face 20–40 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
The Graysons were formally charged in Delaware Circuit Court, Delaware County Prosecutor Eric Hoffman said in a statement. Online court records did not list attorneys who could comment on their behalf.
First responders discovered the girl with a gunshot wound to her head on the afternoon of July 26 at the home in Muncie, 60 miles (100 kilometers) northeast of Indianapolis. She was taken to IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
The boy said he went to a safe in his parents’ bedroom while his mother was napping, turned a key to unlock the safe and accidentally shot his sister while playing with the gun, Muncie Police Officer Andrew Sell said in an affidavit.
Jacob Grayson said his son had accessed the safe previously and that he had taken the boy to a shooting range and showed him how to shoot a gun, Sell wrote.
“The living conditions in the home were deplorable. There was food, trash, animal feces, and furniture strewn throughout the house. The children’s beds were mattresses on the floor with no sheets or blankets. Both mattresses had various stains on them. The walls of the home appeared to have feces smeared on them in multiple places,” Sell said.