October 22nd, 2012
03:27 AM ET

Relative shoots costumed girl after mistaking her for a skunk

A little girl was fighting for her life early Monday after she was shot outside a Halloween party by a relative who mistook her costume for a skunk.

Police in western Pennsylvania's New Sewickley Township said the 9-year-old girl was dressed in black with a black hat for the Saturday evening party.

As the two to three dozen guests milled about, the girl went to hide on the edge of a hill.

It was past 8 p.m. and the sun had long set. A relative spotted the dark figure in the distance, mistook it for a skunk and fired his shotgun, said Officer Greg Carney with the township police.

The girl was hit in the neck, back and arm - and flown to Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, about 30 miles away. There, she remained in the intensive care unit, Carney said.

Police will determine later Monday whether they will charge the shooter, whom they did not name. Nor did they say how he was related to the girl.

They did add, however, that the man had not been drinking.

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Filed under: Halloween • Pennsylvania • U.S.
soundoff (1,550 Responses)
  1. aj

    obviously they are steelers fans

    October 24, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. coaster26

    Wow, it takes a special kind of idiot to bring a gun to a childrens costume party. It would take a better person than I am to forgive this person.

    October 24, 2012 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. eric


    October 24, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Emohkinz

    This seems like a cover up to me. You don't shoot skunks, let alone at night at a children's party...either hat or this guy is a gun nut. Either way he should be punished by law and sent to jail.

    October 25, 2012 at 12:27 am | Report abuse |
  5. Oh Yeah?

    Must be that part where Pennsylvanians cling to god and guns.... I say this with sarcasm.
    Honestly, people around, kids party and some guy pulls a shot gun? Give me a break.
    A pellet gun would have done just fine to scare off the skunk.
    Another thought: what does a dead shot up skunk stink like???? Like all the other skunk road kill. Horrible. So this idiot would should a skunk near a party with a shotgun. That sure would be the party pooper / stinker. Geeeze, morons.

    October 25, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oh Yeah?

      ooops *would shoot a skunk...

      October 25, 2012 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Gary

    The idiot who shot that poor little girl needs to be sent to prison for life. No one in their right mind should shoot a firearm at a party with that many people around; especially with young children around. The moron must be an inbred idiot, who failed to follow proper firearm safety and verify if it was an actual skunk or a person!

    October 25, 2012 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. achepotle

    Senseless..if that little girl had been mandated by law to carry a weapon, she could have returned fire and this would have ended much differently.

    October 26, 2012 at 9:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Skip

      Yup, you also belong in the idot ranks

      December 23, 2012 at 4:21 am | Report abuse |
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  9. baltimore

    was his name George Zimmerman... senseless animal... (the man)

    November 1, 2012 at 7:04 am | Report abuse |
  10. fleur

    Hard to believe that people will fight for their "right" to have access to deadly weapons with stories like this.

    November 1, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
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  12. meme

    A 9 year old girl. Just how big do the skunks get in PA? I'm confused by the shooter's confusion.

    November 5, 2012 at 2:14 am | Report abuse |
  13. Skip

    The author of this article lays his words out there as if to show you how it could have happened to any one of us. WRONG! With kids around why be so stupid. Probably because you are and can be. You know, as you think more about this incident, as written in the article, I, personally, think that something else was going on, a stupid game or something; and, the girl did accidentally get injured. But, the shooter and anyone allowing this to happen should all be punished severely.

    December 23, 2012 at 4:20 am | Report abuse |
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