A three-year-old boy accidentally shot his mother dead as the family sat in their car in a parking lot at a supermarket in a suburb of Chicago, police said.
The woman was shot on Saturday in Dolton and pronounced dead at hospital, police said.
The family were sitting in their car outside a Food for Less store when the boy somehow found the gun and fired it, striking his mother, police said.
“This could have been prevented,” Dolton trustee Andrew Holmes said on Sunday as he visited the supermarket to hand out gun locks and speak to shoppers about the importance of gun safety.
“All it takes is a second: unlock it, thread it through the barrel, bring it back around, put it in and lock it back,” Holmes told WLS-TV. “If you leave it, secure it.”
Authorities said the boy’s father was in custody after indicating that he owned the gun. On Monday, no charges had been filed.