AVON, Ind. — A woman and child were injured and a third person is under arrest in connection to a shooting in Avon early Wednesday afternoon.
According to the Avon Police Department, officers responded to a report of two people shot in the 7300 block of Glensford Drive just before 12:45 p.m.
When officers arrived, they found a 4-year-old girl and her grandmother, who police say had both been shot. The woman and child were transported to area hospitals and authorities said both were in stable condition, expected to survive their injuries.
Police believe the shooting happened inside the living room area of the home and a handgun was fired during the incident.
“During the initial phases of our investigation, much time is spent in order to understand the circumstances of everyone inside the residence,” said Deputy Chief Brian Nugent. “As result of that process, our detectives and our uniformed officers have conducted several searches, requiring search warrants from the Hendricks County Courts process.”
Investigators executed several search warrants and could be seen throughout the afternoon going in and out of the home, gathering and documenting evidence. They also spoke with witnesses, including two adults who were inside the residence at the time of the shooting and were unharmed.
“One of the individuals who is actually identified as a resident inside this home, was interviewed among a couple other individuals earlier this evening,” said Nugent. “As a result of those interviews, in comparison to the information we have on the scene here in Avon, we have arrested a gentleman by the name of Brandon Clark.”
According to Avon police, the 25-year-old was arrested on one count of a charge of Criminal Recklessness While Armed with a Deadly Weapon. Police said Clark has been cooperative with investigators.
“Mr. Clark is a 25-year-old resident of this home address. He is related to both of the victims here on the scene,” said Nugent.
Although police said Clark owns the gun fired in the shooting, it is not clear who was handling it at the time.
“We believe he owns a firearm that was inadvertently, perhaps, mishandled inside the residence. Someone can be handling a weapon irresponsibly, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they possessed it at the time, but that still remains under investigation,” Nugent said.
The child suffered a gunshot wound to her lower extremities, police said, and the grandmother, to her upper body. Investigators believe only one shot was fired during the incident.
“We do believe this incident was an unintentional shooting,” said Nugent. “Criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon is certainly a very serious offense here in Hendricks County; one that we take very seriously and we’re talking about the safety of others and particularly children.”
According to police, a preliminary investigation revealed that the home contained multiple guns. Nugent said this incident speaks to the importance of gun safety, especially in a home where children are present.
“The ongoing issue remains the safety of firearms in homes. My opinion is that over 99% of people are very responsible gun owners and this is a very unique situation when these sort of things happen, but we encourage anybody to take steps and training, or gun locks, whatever it may be to prevent such things like this from happening,” said Nugent.
Avon police offer free gun locks to the public, along with many other agencies, and encourage people reach out if they are in need of one.
Police said the Department of Child Services has been notified and has been assisting during the initial phases of the investigation into the shooting. The police department for Avon schools has also been notified, according to Avon PD, and has been assisting with anything as needed for the family and other children in the home.
“I’m actually a foster parent, so we hear of these things happening to children every day. This is the world that we live in. It’s scary,” said neighbor Mallory Tye. “It is a really bad that feeling to know that this is happening right across the street.”
Mallory said she was home at the time of the shooting on Wednesday and realized quickly how serious the incident was.
“I had no idea then I saw the two stretchers come out and I saw the grandma, so I knew at that point it wasn’t good,” said Mallory.
Neither Mallory or her wife Amanda Tye knew what happened at the time, but witnessed the aftermath. The couple’s children play with the children who live in the home where the shooting happened.
“It’s a little more close to home for us because our kids play together. So, the older kids play together with our son quite often, and we are not so familiar with the 4-year-old that did get shot, but we do know of her. Her older sister talks about her all the time,” said Amanda.
The two shared that there were children getting on the bus around the time of the shooting and they fear for what may have happened if a bullet exited the home or there were even more people nearby.
“We said, you know, what if it had been the kids out here all playing together and they heard it or saw it, or for heaven forbid, it hit one of them,” Amanda said.
The couple is shaken up to know this happened to a child and shared that they hope the victims make a full recovery.
“I’m really praying and hoping these kids are okay and they get the help and everything that they need and deserve,” said Amanda.
Police said this incident is still under investigation.