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The unlocked gun a boy was handling Thursday when he accidentally shot himself belongs to his father.
The child's father could face a misdemeanor charge of failing to secure a weapon, said Catawba County Chief Deputy Coy Reid.
The 14-year-old boy was playing with the gun about 4:45 p.m. Thursday at his home on Rifle Range Road near Conover when he accidentally shot himself in the head.
Reid said the boy told police he was home alone when he found the unlocked gun in a dresser drawer.
Reid declined to give the name of the child's father until charges are filed against him. The boy's name was also not released.
The owner could be in violation of North Carolina general statue 14-315.1, which is titled "Storage of Firearms to Protect Minors."
Catawba County sheriff's deputies turned their findings in the investigation to the District Attorney's Office, which will determine if charges will be filed.
Reid said he hopes to hear a decision on the matter in a few days.
Reid said sheriff's deputies initially believed the boy was 10 years old, but they later discovered the boy is 14 years old.
The boy was transported Thursday to Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem. The child was reportedly in stable condition Friday, and Reid said he hasn't received any further information about the boy's condition.