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. james

    how big are the skunks up there? and celebrating a holiday to satan every year will continue to get kids hurt. party on dummies.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • NotTheMama

      Halloween is not a demonic celebration by any of the probably evolutions.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      Exactly!!!!! Any gun owner who violates the 1st rule of gun ownership needs to be held acountable. If not in a court then other gun owners should strap antlers on him and send him off into the woods to flush out others infected with the same ailment.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Billy

    Something stinks Here!! Hmm but sorry about the little girl.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Rick

    An Old saying goes like this " Don't shoot it if you can not preprely identify it" It's that simple!
    He should be charged, period !

    October 22, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  4. PJ

    An idiot is an idiot. I'm sure that some idiot killed someone with a legally operated automobile on the same day but because the anti gun media brings a rare incident like this out to the forefront the anti gun lobby crawls out of the woodwork and is all over this.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  5. mikemazzla

    Yes he was not drunk...he was just really stupid and another dopey redneck with their dopey guns

    October 22, 2012 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Buzzwad

    Didn't shoot her once, BUT 3 times!!!

    October 22, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe Mama

      Um, you do know what a shot gun is, right?

      October 22, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      It was a shotgun, and therefore had many BB's shot at once. That means that one shot can hit a wider range of points. So it was probably just one shot hitting multiple points.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      It's a shotgun, once shot causes multiple wounds. No where did it mention he fired 3 shots. He's still an idiot for even firing a single shot, but no, he didn't shot 3 times.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • shegreek

      Article said he fired, but doesn't say how many times. Mistakes are made by all sorts of people. Can we try not to be so judgemental?

      October 22, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shane

      He didn't shoot her three times. A shotgun sprays out several small pellets that would have hit her in multiple locations. I think he is moron for mistaking her for a skunk and for shooting in the dark without being 100% positive of what he was shooting at. Doesn't make all gun owners morons, or even close. The liberals like to complain about morons getting guns, but they are the first to scream if you try to limit the rights of morons when it comes to other things...and they call themselves tolerant.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      Well said Shane!

      October 22, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  7. JonfromLI

    We need looser gun laws in this country. Soon there's going to be a time when we cannot protect our families from intruders, animals, or little children dressed as animals.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sean

      If only she was armed herself, she could've defended herself a bit better. Thankfully she wasn't killed. Hope they prosecute this moron and take his guns away (they won't).

      October 22, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Laura

    Not sure if they will charge the shooter??? The guy fired a gun without identifying the target. He clearly has horrible judgement if he can't tell the difference between a 9 year old and a skunk. Also why are you taking out a shotgun to shoot skunks in the middle of a family party. It scares me he has a loaded shotgun around dozens of people and is firing it. Its not even like he thought it was a bear, he thought it was a skunk, does this guy sit on his porch and shoot small animals all day?

    October 22, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Mr. Doe

    Another gun-happy idiot

    October 22, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MargieM

    You should NEVER fire a gun at something unless you have a clear shot and know what you are shooting at! It could have been someone's dog or cat, or anything! And why the he** was he shootiing after dark in a semi residential area? He thought it was a skunk, not like it was a coyote about to kill his livestock! What a complete moron!

    October 22, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuk

      Don't be surprised. This is what happens when people become mentally lazy due to the availability of guns because solving many stressful problems become as easy as picking up a gun. With the status quo, this should be expected.

      October 22, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      Or it could even be a relative!

      October 22, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  11. JGN

    Moron. Who shoots at a gentle animal like a skunk?
    And ends up shooting another gentle animal. Stupid people with a stupid weapon.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. John

    this poor, poor little girl. I don't know what she was dressed up as, but I can sure understand why a child would want to act like whatever person/creature they dressed up as. I truly hope she pulls through ok.

    You know, this guy being sober makes it worse. If he was of average intelligence and drunk, you could understand why he'd be so stupid to shoot a FOUR FOOT, 90 POUND skunk. Since he was sober, it means he is just that fornicating stupid. And, as the popular meme says "You can't fix stupid".

    October 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Tbarr

    No need to charge him if that was my 9 yr old girl, he wouldnt make it to trial alive.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Bad Wabbit

    This is not a funny story but I do keep thinking of Pepe Le Pew.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  15. gmenfan54

    Another idiot with a gun.

    October 22, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
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