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.

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

    He may not have been drinking, but was definitely on something. What size skunk did he think she was. I mean really, a skunk that big and why on earth are you going to be shooting a gun off at a kids halloween party. What's this world coming to?

    October 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Oderless Fecal Matter

    I know this little girl as I live down the road and my daughter plays with her quite often. I believe this shooting was intentional as she is one of the most annoying little girls I have ever met. Think Honey Boo Boo with a big helping of Paris Hilton.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Todd

      You should have been in the costume. IDIOT!!!!!!!!!!! Is your mother your fathers sister??????

      October 22, 2012 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • J

      Wow, what an absolute heartless witch you are saying it's OK to shoot a little girl because you think she is annoying. Check yourself into therapy and anger management classes.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • G.Lo

      What a horribly irresponsible thing to say.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kelley

      So by your logic, the little girl who is according to YOU guilty of being ANNOYING. Deserves to be shot ! That would make YOU & THE SHOOTER WHAT??????? FRIGGING STUPID. I WOULD RATE YOU AND HE RIGHT UP THERE WITH THE MISSUNDERSTOOD TALIBAN OR KKK.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shocked

      You should be ashamed of yourself for speaking of a child in that manner. Especially in the situation she is in. She is in the hospital fighting for her life and you are on the internet referring to her as annoying. An annoying child doesn't deserve to be shot. If this was your child how would you appreciate it if someone was online bashing a 9 YEAR OLD CHILD while she is lying in a hospital bed? I only hope and pray that your child doesn't learn to act the way you do. There is a reason why children are bullies these says and it looks in your case as to start with the parents.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • David H

      Reddit hasn't been down that long, just go back to mashing F5 on their site for a few hours.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • JohnK

      Idiots like you are the ones that deserve to be shot. You ARE fecal matter!

      October 22, 2012 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • NSTRez

      I can't believe that you would really post something like that. Some children can be annoying, but to say that they were shot intentionally....guess you didn't win parent of the year this time around. I really hope and pray that nothing like this happens to your child and you have to read nasty comments like this.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. i_know_everything

    only if the little girl was armed, she could have protected herself

    October 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • OMG

      Well said

      October 22, 2012 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • JohnnyGenius

      Amen, Children will continue to fall victim to gun owners until they have guns of their own!

      October 22, 2012 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Get Real

    Everybody knows he thought it was Barack

    October 22, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. hlime

    Guns are OK, they're neither smart nor stupid. How do we ban morons?

    October 22, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Bob

    Another shining example of how everyone having a gun makes us all safer. I wonder if the shooter will get a medal from the NRA.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tacitus Talks

      There are always accidents. The fact is, guns save more lives in preventing crime. Those are statistical facts. Your type would not demand the banning of alcohol or cars because some idiot misuses them.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Patrish

      Why bother to even shot a skunk? Because you have a gun of course. What an idiot. Poor kid, poor parents.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Anne

    When one has access to a gun, their brain goes into hiding and the gun comes out to play, it is that simple.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darcy

      That was a completely idiotic thing to say. By that standard we should ban cars because some people can't stop speeding.

      October 22, 2012 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • azswordsman

      Right, which is why we see such a disproportionately high number of shootings being committed by gun store owners.

      October 23, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tacitus Talks

    Because guns are "bad" schools don't allow hunter safety and firearm courses. These are reasonable courses to help children understand that guns are to be respected. For example, know what your target is without a doubt before firing. Never touch a gun without adult supervision. How many kids would not have died because of that little truth. That is one of the first rules of shooting. Never bring a loaded gun into a house. If someone hands you a gun, be sure you strip it and make sure it is not loaded. The NRA and firearms groups have tried to get schools to let them teach the kids basic firearm safety, but guns are "bad" in their leftist view. Eventhough they teach "traffic" safety and far more people die by automobile.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  9. TPF

    This is another example of what gives RESPONSIBLE guns owners a bad rap. Having been a hunter for over 50 years as many millions is us are, there is no excuse in the world why someone shoots something that they can not verify what it is. Especially a harmless skunk, that will go on it's way if you make a loud noise or throw something it's way. This man does need to be charged, not with discharging his gun, but stupidity. He should be held accountable for this young girls hospital bills and life long care if she does live. I can't tell you how many skunks that I've had some close encounters with during 50 years and not one time did I feel the need to shoot them. It doesn't matter what type of animal it is, if you can't see it clearly then don't shoot at it.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  10. BudOfIowa

    Understand its your right to bear arms. But i sincerly believe in a basic firearms and or hunters safty class your taught always know where your shot is going and what you are shooting at. why on gos green earth would you shoot into the dark of night? And being in Iowa i dont see a SKUNK as a animal you need to shoot to protect yourself from..Try backing up and walking away..

    October 22, 2012 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Sam

    Why did this guy have his shotgun out while kids were playing? If kids are playing in costumes at night, isn't that the time to let any skunks you see live, just this once? You still have to shoot everything in the dark that moves?

    October 22, 2012 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  12. erock

    what I want to know is who has a loaded shot gun ready to go at all times. . was she sitting on the porch in a rocking chair with a little wheat hanging out of her mouth. . um. . and Aaron. . shut up dude. . cause I always see skunks on when animals attack. . I walked up on a Skunk once. . it stood up to say, hey, don't mess with me, and you know what I did. . walked away. .wow. .that was hard. . . guess I didn't need a sub machine gun to deal with an animal in nature- So sick and tired of dumb people –

    October 22, 2012 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jamie

      Dude, does your shift key not work? BTW, it wasn't a female that fired the gun. It was also a shotgun and not a machine gun.

      October 22, 2012 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Eric

    Yes you need to charge the shooter.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Dale

    Typical outback hillbilly americans...busting out a shotgun during a childrens costume party to go a-shootin' varmits with kids running around everywhere. I'm sure Billy-Bob was reeaaal sorry-like afterwards an all...

    October 22, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ssmon

    sounds like the poor girl was shot with a shotgun which is very close range firearm. How much of a complete moron do you have to be to mistake a 9 year old dressed up for an actual skunk? I dont care if the shooter drank his families moonshine distillery dry and James Cameron himself used his special effects for the girls costume you cant possibly mistake the 2. To top that off the police are still "deciding whether to charge the shooter" congrats New Sewickley police force you are coming across as competent and intelligent as the shooter you have decided not to name.

    October 22, 2012 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54