Nine-year-old with Uzi shoots instructor by mistake

A 9-year-old girl accidentally killed an Arizona shooting instructor while he was teaching her how to use an automatic weapon.

A 9-year-old girl accidentally killed an Arizona shooting instructor as he was showing her how to use an automatic Uzi, authorities said Tuesday.

Charles Vacca, 39, died Monday shortly after being airlifted to University Medical Center in Las Vegas, Mohave County sheriff's officials said.

Vacca was standing next to the girl at the Last Stop outdoor shooting range in White Hills when she pulled the trigger and the recoil sent the gun over her head, investigators said.

Authorities said the girl was at the shooting range with her parents. Her name was not released.

The range reportedly has a minimum age limit of 8 years old and anyone under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult. The range holds 'Burgers and Bullets' days where children from eight years and up can fire automatic weapons under parental supervision.

Ronald Scott, a firearms safety expert, said most shooting ranges have an age limit and strict safety rules when teaching children to shoot. He said instructors usually have their hands on guns when children are firing high-powered weapons.

"You can't give a 9-year-old an Uzi and expect her to control it," Scott said.

Other gun owners were also critical of how the instructor handled this situation.

"As a gun owner this is wrong, no nine year old needs to handle even under supervision a full automatic firearm. Teach gun safety YES, this how ever is not gun safety and paints all rational and educated firearms owners in a bad light. Several people are at fault for this happening, the parents of the girl, the fire arms instructor, and the Range Master. This is one more tragic incident that could and should have been avoided if common sense had been used," wrote Chuck Snawder on Huffington Post.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.