Millions of Americans own guns for varying reasons: protection, hunting, target shooting, etc. While the place of guns in our society has been debated for years, most people can agree on one fact: firearms need to be kept secure from young children. A number of well-publicized tragedies over the years have clearly highlighted the dangers of allowing minors easy access to any kind of weapon.
In Iowa, as in many other states, this need for protection has even been codified into law. If an adult gun owner fails to keep his or her weapons securely stored, he or she could be guilty of a crime if a child under age 14 gains access to them. In addition, he or she may be held responsible for any resulting injuries in a civil court of law. To learn more, call the Des Moines child firearm injury lawyers of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. at (515) 705-0233.
Children’s Errors, Adult Liability
Under the law, gun owners who have any reason to believe that children under age 14 might access their firearms must try to keep them secure. They can accomplish this by one or more of the following:
- Installing trigger lock devices on their guns
- Storing their guns in securely locked containers
- Keeping their guns in an area that should not be accessible to children
It is also illegal to give, sell, or lend a firearm to a person under the age of 18 unless the minor is accompanied by a legal guardian or spouse who gives his or her permission.
If these laws are violated, and the minor intentionally or accidentally harms another person, both the adult gun owner and the minor could face criminal charges. In some circumstances, one or both may also be found liable for losses suffered by victims. An experienced Des Moines gun injury attorney can provide further information.
If you or someone you know has been hurt by another party’s reckless use of firearms, you could have grounds for a legal claim. To learn more, contact the Des Moines firearm injury lawyers of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. at (515) 705-0233.