BROADVIEW HEIGHTS, OH (WOIO) - On Monday, a 39-year-old weapons instructor was accidentally killed by his 9-year-old student when she lost control of the automatic Uzi she was shooting. The accident happened at an outdoor range near the Arizona-Nevada line.
According to investigation, the instructor, Charles Vacca was standing next to the girl. She shot one time, then lost control, shooting four more shots. The recoil caused the gun to go over her head, and one of those rounds struck Vacca in the head.
Our Brian Duffy went to Stonewall Gunshop in Broadview Heights to get an instructors perspective on this fatal accident.
Diane Donnett is the owner of Stonewall, they train, instruct, and shoot here, and she believes there were some critical mistakes made that cost the instructor his life.
"It's quite obvious this little girl couldn't handle this Uzi and therefore it should have never been put in her hands," said Donnett.
Donnett believes the first mistake was that the young girl was just not big enough to handle an Uzi, the second mistake was that the gun should have been set to semi-automatic-one pull, one shot. Or even select fire, one pull, three shots.
"But they didn't, they put it on full auto, she pulled the trigger and the gun went just like this because she couldn't handle the recoil and that gun climbing," Donnett said, motioning over her head.
Stonewall will let children shoot in their range but only after they are up to date on training and they will turn down parents who are too aggressive in choosing weapons for their kids to shoot on the range. They base those decisions on the side of the child.
"Is there a nine-year-old really who should be handling something this powerful? In full-auto mode? No, no I would not," Donnett said.
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