Five family members were arrested Monday in connection with a November accidental shooting that critically injured a 3-year-old North Las Vegas boy, court documents show.
During the investigation, detectives found 17 guns in the home where the shooting happened, with seven of the firearms loaded, according to an arrest report.
“Fifteen of the guns were located where a child could reach them from the floor with minimal effort,” the report said.
Liza Haut, Richard Haut, Joshua Haut, Marvin Haut and Rackell Haut were arrested Monday. Liza Haut was charged with one count of felony child abuse or neglect with substantial bodily or mental harm, and two counts of felony child abuse or neglect. The other family members were all charged with three counts each of felony child abuse or neglect, North Las Vegas Justice Court records show.
The charges come after a 3-year-old boy accidentally shot himself in the head with a pistol he found in a purse belonging to his mother, Liza Haut, the report said.
Officers were called after the shooting at about 9:30 a.m. Nov. 10, to a home on the 5000 block of Drifting Pebble Street, near Washburn Road and North Fifth Street.
Joshua Haut, the boy’s uncle, was asleep in the home, along with the boy’s 5-year-old sister, at the time of the shooting.
The other family members charged — Richard Haut, the boy’s father; Marvin Haut, the boy’s grandfather; and Rackell Haut, the boy’s grandmother — lived at the home but were away during the shooting. Marvin, Richard and the boy’s 4-year-old brother were duck hunting in Overton that day, the report said.
The boy found the pistol after his mother left her purse on the kitchen counter. She heard a gunshot from another room and found the boy, picking him up and taking him upstairs to wake her brother-in-law before calling 911, the report said.
The boy was taken to University Medical Center where he underwent surgery Nov. 10. North Las Vegas Police Department spokesman Eric Leavitt said Tuesday that the boy is still alive.
Liza Haut told detectives in November that she normally kept the gun fully loaded with the safety on, but she occasionally noticed the safety would come off while the gun was in her purse, possibly because it was getting “knocked off” or because the holster didn’t fully cover it. She said she last checked to see if the safety was on “about two weeks ago,” the report said at the time.
“Liza explained she was uncomfortable carrying a gun, however, her husband wanted her to carry it,” the report said. “She has not practiced with the gun since October of 2017.”
“There were no baby-gates or similar items preventing the children of the home from accessing any of the rooms where the firearms were located,” the report said.
Liza Haut said the three children were told about the gun in her purse and were taught not to go near it. She also said the 3-year-old boy who was injured is good at climbing and “does not always listen,” the report said.
“The assumption that a small child will not access these firearms, without any other safeguards, is unacceptable firearm safety,” the report said.
All five family members were released from custody after posting surety bonds. Liza Haut had a bail of $30,000, while the other four had bails of $15,000 each, court records show. They are set to appear in court on April 18.
Contact Katelyn Newberg at email@example.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.