By Philip  |  11-22-2017   News
Photo credit: AL.com

A terrifying tragedy occurred this past weekend in Birmingham, Alabama after a seven-year-old girl was shot inside of her father's home.

Unfortunately, Police say that the young girl, Nina Smith, a second-grade student at Oliver Elementary School, was playing with a 14-year-old sibling as well as her brother and sister when they accessed her father's handgun.

During the time of the improper handling of the weapon by the young children, the gun discharged, and Nina was shot.

The bullet entered Nina's shoulder, exiting through her sides on her abdomen but caused multiple internal injuries.

The young girl was immediately rushed to the hospital via friends and family but to make matters worse, the car she was traveling inside of crashed at the intersection of Montclair Road and Gaywood Circle due to the high rate of speed in which the driver was fleeing to the hospital at.

Police officers from the Mountain Brook Police Department then were dispatched to the scene alongside emergency medical responders noticed the poor girl had been shot and brought her to the hospital.

As a result, Nina's gall bladder had to be removed and her lungs are also punctured by the bullet. She also has some stomach injuries.

“She's breathing but it's not as strong as they want it to be she's on a breathing tube,” said her mother, Elizabeth Williams. “She has on a neck brace from the wreck, but they don't think she's injured from that.”

Her condition is listed as improving, and she has been moved out of the intensive care unit into a step-down unit. She is expected to remain hospitalized for possibly a couple of weeks. “She's agitated, and she can't sleep,” Williams said Wednesday.

The shooting happened on Sunday afternoon while Nina was visiting her father, but he wasn't home at the time of the incident.

Nina was reportedly inside the home with several of her older siblings on her father's side including the 14-year-old, a 15-year-old, a 17-year-old and the 17-year-old's girlfriend.

An adult was also present inside the home at the time, whose name has yet to be released.

Nina's mother said that the gun was brought into the home by one of the sibling's friends and that her ex, Nina's father didn't own any weapons.

According to Birmingham Homicide Sgt. John Tanks, he confirmed that the evidence which was presented to the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office deemed the shooting as being accidental.

The evidence suggests that the 14-year-old got a hold of the gun and removed the clip from the weapon but there still a round in the chamber, and that's how young Nina was shot.

Nina's mother doesn't believe the shooting was accidental and says she's going to fight the claim by the police department.

Williams said she believes someone should be held accountable for her daughter's injuries. “An accident is a 5-year-old with a gun, not a 14-year-old,'” she said. “I'm going to get justice for my baby.”

In a previous interview with<a href="http://www.al.com/news/birmingham/index.ssf/2017/11/shooting_of_7-year-old_girl_in.html">AL.com</a>, Williams said she wants Nina's shooting to be a reminder to all who have and handle guns.

“Having a gun in the house is not safe,” she said. “It's always the innocent person standing by who gets shot. It's never the person holding the gun. I don't think guns should be allowed.”

This should serve as a solid reminder to keep firearms safely locked away from children, and although it remains unknown exactly how this fourteen-year-old obtained the handgun, somewhere along the way there was a failure in gun safety practices.

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