Toddler Accidentally Shoots Mother Dead in Illinois: Police

A 3-year-old boy accidentally shot his mother dead while sitting in a car in Illinois, according to police.

The shooting happened in a Food for Less parking lot in Greenwood and Sibley Boulevard in suburban Dolton on Saturday, WGN-TV reported.

Dolton police told the network the family had been sitting in their car when the boy got a hold of a firearm and used it to shoot his mother.

She was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, but later succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced dead.

Police said the boy's father was taken into custody after he admitted to owning the gun used in the shooting.

He had not been charged as of Sunday afternoon.

Newsweek has contacted the Dolton Police Department.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, a database that collects information about shootings from across the U.S., dozens of people have been shot dead in Illinois this year.

The database found that, since January 1, some 139 people in the state had been fatally shot with a firearm.

It added there had been 271 recorded unintentional shootings across the whole of the U.S. since January 1.

The shooting is the latest tragic case where a child has accidentally killed another person after coming across a gun.

In February, a 14-year-old in Morgan City, Louisiana, shot and killed an 11-year-old boy, according to police.

The Morgan City Police Department said several "juveniles" at a home had somehow found the firearm inside the home.

Police added the 14-year-old allegedly "took possession of the weapon" loaded it and fired it, "tragically taking the life of the victim."

The alleged shooter was arrested and later charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault and illegal use of a dangerous instrument.

In 2021, a 3-year-old fatally shot and killed his 5-year-old cousin in Georgia on Thanksgiving.

The South Fulton police previously told Newsweek that Khalis Eberhart died after being shot in the chest at The Gardens at Camp Creek Apartment Houses.

While she was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, doctors pronounced her dead after she succumbed to her injuries.

Police said the 3-year-old boy "located an unsecured firearm and fired the weapon, striking the victim."

The South Fulton police did not reveal any of the other details that led up to the incident or how the gun was accessed.

Tracy Towns, the child's grandmother, said the 5-year-old had a twin who had a "great bond with" Eberhart.

She added: "When you saw one, you saw the other one. They were always holding hands, hugging.

"They were always together. They talked to one another. They had a language that nobody [else knew]."

Stock image of police car
Stock image of police car. A toddler in Illinois shot and killed his mother, according to police. Getty