Public Information Officer
WOMAN ARRESTED AFTER CHILD GRABS LOADED GUN AND PULLS TRIGGER
A Deltona woman was arrested Monday after a 3-year-old child got a hold of the woman’s loaded gun and pulled the trigger. The incident occurred inside a vehicle in the parking lot of a church’s school academy, with the round shattering a window in the vehicle and lodging in the door frame. There were no injuries.
The defendant, 30-year-old Abbie Maldonado, had a 3-year-old boy with her Monday afternoon when she drove to the Good Shepherd Academy on Howland Boulevard to pick up her son from school. Maldonado got out to walk around and left the boy unsecured in the back of the vehicle, with the rear passenger door propped open so she could keep an eye on the child. Maldonado said she was walking in the parking lot with some other parents when she heard a loud bang, but didn’t immediately realize it was a gunshot. She went to the vehicle to check on the child and then walked around the parking lot some more. Maldonado then returned to the vehicle and took the child into the school to go to the bathroom, still not realizing anything was wrong. When she returned to her vehicle, that’s when she heard the sound of glass crackling. And that’s when she realized the front driver’s side window was shattered.
Maldonado then went to the front of the church to see if anyone had seen someone by her vehicle. When she returned to the vehicle again, she noticed that her loaded gun wasn’t in the driver’s side door pocket where she had left it. It was on the front seat. After checking the child for injuries, she went inside to report the incident to the school. The shooting was then reported to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office in a 911 call. “Nobody’s hurt, but we had a parent that has a concealed weapon permit and a child got a hold of it and pulled the trigger,” the caller said. Deputies began arriving at 3:45 p.m. and after investigating the circumstances, they arrested Maldonado (DOB: 4/25/86) on a felony charge of child neglect. Maldonado told deputies that she normally keeps the gun locked in the trunk.
The child was released to the defendant's boyfriend who had responded to the scene.
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