MUNCIE, Ind. — A Muncie mother and her boyfriend are charged in the shooting death of a 4-year-old boy.

Monday afternoon, police were called out to a home on South Burlington Drive and found the little boy suffering from a gunshot wound. He was rushed to the hospital where he sadly died.

“It’s definitely heartbreaking to hear,” said Detective Nate Lien, with Danville Police Department.

A day later, court documents reveal what happened and how that 4-year-old got a hold of the gun. Investigators say the Glock was routinely left on a dollhouse, just three feet from the ground.

The boy’s mother, 22-year-old Alycia Smith, and her 19-year-old boyfriend Joseph Jackson are charged with neglect of a dependent resulting in death.

“These things are very preventable. Just simply locking up a gun, keeping it out of sight, and keeping it out of reach for kids,” said Detective Lien.

Detective Nate Lien with the Danville Police Department stresses the importance of gun safety.

“If you are going to store a gun, store the gun in one spot and store the magazine in another spot or store the gun in one spot with the magazine but keep the ammunition in another spot. Separate those things,” said Detective Lien.  

Several law enforcement agencies across the state offer gun locks for free.

“With the gun being locked, the gun can’t be loaded and the gun can’t be fired. It’s impossible for this to fire a round,” said Detective Lien.

FOX 59 timed it out to show you just how simple and quick it is. It took Detective Lien less than 10 seconds to put on a gun lock.

In the tragic Muncie case, police noted Jackson nor Smith had taken any precautionary measures to secure the firearm from the children. Investigators say there was a large gun safe on the first floor that could’ve been used.

“Unfortunately, bad things happen when you don’t lock them up,” said Detective Lien.

Danville Police and Muncie Police both offer gun safety locks for free.