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Muncie couple charged after daughter accidentally shot by older brother

Boy, 6, was playing with gun he got from safe as parents slept
Posted at 1:11 PM, Aug 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-02 13:21:50-04

MUNCIE — The parents of a boy who accidentally shot his 5-year-old sister with a gun he found inside their home have been charged in connection with the girl's death.

Jacob and Kimberly Grayson, ages 28 and 27, are both charged with four counts each of neglect of a dependent resulting in death — one each as a level 1 felony and three each as a level 6 felony, according to court documents filed Tuesday.

The charges come exactly one week after the couple's daughter was shot to death at their Muncie home.

Police found the girl shot in the head as they responded about 2:25 p.m. July 26 to the 2800 block of Monroe Street. They later determined her 6-year-old brother accidentally shot her with a gun he found inside the home.

According to a probable cause affidavit, the boy removed the gun from a safe on top of a dresser in Jacob and Kimberly Grayson's bedroom as the couple was sleeping.

"(The boy) stated the key was in the key hole and he simply turned it, pushed on the door, and it opened," the affidavit alleges. "He advised he accidentally shot (his sister) while playing with the gun."

The girl was later transported to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead from her injuries.

The Delaware County Coroner's Office has not publicly released the girl's name. Coroner Rick Howell said Tuesday she died from gunshot wounds but the manner of her death hadn't been determined.

Jacob Grayson told police during an interview his son had gotten to the safe before, so he moved it to the other side of the dresser, "rather than placing it somewhere inaccessible to a small child," the affidavit alleges.

Jacob Grayson also said he kept two guns, each with a loaded magazine, inside the safe, the affidavit alleges.

Kimberly Grayson similarly acknowledged the boy had accessed the safe before and that the key was in the keyhole.

The couple also said they had taken their son to a shooting range before and showed him how to shoot.

Additionally, police found the children were living in "deplorable" living conditions, including trash, animal feces and furniture strewn throughout the house, according to the affidavit.

The children slept on stained mattresses on the floor without sheets or blankets, and the home's walls "appeared to have feces smeared on them in multiple places," the affidavit alleges.

An initial court date for the couple had yet to be scheduled as of Tuesday.

If convicted, Jacob and Kimberly Grayson could face 20-40 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000 for the level 1 felony count, as well as six months to two and a half years and a fine up to $10,000 for each level 6 count.