Crime

Toddler shoots himself. Now Dad faces felony charges.

Michael Shawn Walls
Michael Shawn Walls Gaston County Sheriff’s Office

A Bessemer City man faces criminal charges after his 2-year-old son shot himself last month with an unsecured gun in the family’s home, authorities said.

Michael Shawn Walls, 28, was arrested Sunday night at his home, Gaston County Police records show.

He was charged with felony child neglect and misdemeanor failure to store a firearm to protect a minor, Sgt. J.D. Cole said. He said the child had found a .25-caliber handgun on the bed and shot himself in the stomach.

At least one other child was in the home at the time, the Shelby Star reported, and social workers took custody of both children after the shooting.

The 2-year-old has been released from the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.

Adam Bell: 704-358-5696, @abell

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