When people choose to stay in hotels, they typically understand that there may be minor inconveniences. The guests in the adjoining room may be noisier than you would like, the towels may not be changed quickly enough, and the ice machine may be empty. Few people consider that their lives may be in danger when they choose to stay in a hotel.
On Friday, November 14, 2014, a young soccer player, visiting Raleigh from Lewisville, was fatally shot when a person in the adjoining room accidentally fired a gun. The bullet traveled into the room occupied by Nathan Andrew Clark, striking and killing the child.
Police report that the accident, which occurred at the Comfort Suites hotel on Corporation Parkway, resulted in shooter Randall Louis Vater, of Knightdale, being charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and involuntary manslaughter. The shooter and victim in this horrible accident were strangers to one another.
The 13-year-old Clark was in the city to take part in the Capital Area Soccer League tournaments this weekend with the rest of his team that pulled out of the competition following the accident.
The victim was a vibrant, active member of his eighth-grade class at Calvary Baptist Day Shool in Winston-Salem. The offender, on the other hand, has been previously convicted of multiple charges, including assault on a female, breaking and entering, simple assault, and hit-and-run. According to federal and state laws, Vater was not permitted to own or possess a firearm.
This statement was issued by Richard Hardy, head of Clark’s school, “Nathan was a terrific and gifted young man who had a great love for people, and he will be greatly missed.”
Statistics Do Not Lie
According to studies, children in America aged between five and 14 years, are 17 times more likely to die at the hand of someone with a gun than children in any other developed nation. Furthermore, when only accidental gun deaths are considered, children aged 15 and younger in America are nine times as likely to die than children in other developed countries.
As is evidenced by the above story, laws are not enough to keep children safe. They are, however, one source of protection. Gun owners are the other source. Any person who chooses to keep a gun in their home or in their company must do so under the assumption that, if located by a child, it will be picked up. Guns must be unloaded and locked in a proper storage box or safe for the protection of both children and adults.
If you or a family member has been the victim of an accidental shooting, regardless of the severity of injury, you have rights that include, but are not limited to, compensation. Contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Auger & Auger today to discuss your case. We will be happy to go over the details with you and always provide a free initial consultation. Please call us today so that we can put our knowledge and experience to work for you.