WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A 5-year-old boy got his hands on his father's gun and shot himself in Randleman Sunday. Now, the boy's father is speaking out, hoping others can learn from his mistake.
"I got a call that my son shot himself in the face and I lost it," Randy Brower said. "It’s hard that someone you love is going through pain and he’s only 5. He don’t deserve to go through nothing he’s going through right now."
Jayden Brower remains in critical condition at Brenner Children’s Hospital in Winston-Salem.
Randleman police were called to 1029 High Point St. shortly after 12:45 p.m. in reference to the shooting.
Jayden was in a booster seat and unbuckled himself as his mother pulled up to the Wendy's drive-thru, according to Randleman police.
The child was able to get a .45 semi-automatic handgun from a pocket on the back of the front passenger seat. Police said the gun went off and the child was shot in the face.
His family has been by his side ever since. While he recovers, fighting for every single breath, the big question is how did such a tragic accident happen?
"I usually keep it right here on the driver’s side. So when I was vacuuming I didn’t want anybody to pull up, other people were pulling up so I just grabbed the gun," Brower said, explaining when he put the gun in the pocket on the back of the passenger seat.
"When my kids are in the car, it’s not even reachable. I was in the car by myself when I was vacuuming so I felt comfortable putting it right there," he said.
After that, Brower says nobody drove the car for days -- until his girlfriend drove it Sunday.
"When she left to go get the things she needed to get, I wasn’t even thinking because I was so focused on my younger son," he said.
He hopes others can learn from the accident.
"A gun holder or whoever has one, just to be more cautious and be more alert," he said. "It’s small things that can happen. You can forget something and it turn into something major. My whole family is hurting from this situation. And I don’t want anyone else to go through what my family is going through right now."
There is no word on charges as of Tuesday evening. Randleman police said they’ll know more about possible charges once investigators talk to the district attorney’s office.
Brower said he’s ready to deal with what comes his way.