2-year-old kills mother with her own gun at Idaho Wal-Mart

Toddler accidentally kills his mother at Idaho Wal-Mart with gun that was in her purse, officials say

A woman is dead after her 2-year-old son accidentally shot her at a Wal-Mart store in northern Idaho on Tuesday, officials said.

Veronica J. Rutledge, 29, had the handgun in her purse while shopping with family members at the Wal-Mart in Hayden, the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office said. About 10:20 a.m., it said, her son, sitting in the shopping cart, “accessed” the gun and fired it. Rutledge was hit.

Rutledge, who lived in the city of Blackfoot in the southeastern part of the state, was the owner of the gun and had a permit to carry a concealed weapon, a sheriff's spokesman told the Los Angeles Times.

The situation “is very tragic,” Wal-Mart spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan told The Times. “We are working very closely with the sheriff’s department as they investigate what happened.”

The store, about 35 miles east of Spokane, Wash., closed for the rest of the day.

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Copyright © 2017, Los Angeles Times


4:59 p.m.: This post has been updated to identify Veronica J. Rutledge and add information about her gun.

The first version of this post was published at 2:13 p.m.

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