Are you kidding me? It's hard to believe an adult would act so stupid with a firearm.
Dad ROBERT DUDA has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the shooting death of his 14-year-old son.
Father charged with manslaughter in death of son
Robert Duda is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of his son, Bryan Duda. (Photo provided by Facebook)
Daily American reporter
SOMERSET-— A father has been charged with involuntary manslaughter and recklessly endangering another person in the shooting death of his 14-year-old son.
State police said Robert William Duda, 43, David Lane, Somerset, was cleaning a .380-caliber handgun at a computer desk in his living room on Sept. 15. There were several family members present, including Duda’s 14-year-old son, who was lying on the couch.
Bryan Duda was joking with his father and said, “Shoot me, Dad. Shoot me,” according to a probable-cause affidavit.
Duda pointed the firearm in the direction of his son and the firearm discharged. A bullet went into the boy’s right side below his armpit, police said.
The teen said “ouch.” Duda went over to check on his son and noticed blood coming from his jacket. He picked up his son. Duda and the boy’s mother rushed their son to Somerset Hospital, police said.
“The boy received treatment for his injuries but died a short time later at the hospital,” Cpl. Edward Thomas said.
Just prior to the incident, Duda and Tony Porterfield had went to a local sports shop to sell some guns, police said in a criminal complaint. Both men came into the residence where the 14-year-old teen was home after school. At some point, Porterfield left and went to Duda’s truck to retrieved the handgun from the glove box. He took it into the home and handed it to Duda while he was sitting at the computer table, according to the affidavit.
At least four other people, including a 4-month-old child, were in the home when the shooting occurred.
“He was in the process of cleaning his firearm in the living room. He mishandled the firearm and it discharged while everyone was in the living room,” Thomas said.
Duda told police he thought the gun was unloaded, Thomas said.
District Attorney Jerry Spangler said there was no evidence that the shooting was intentional, but Duda’s conduct resulted in the death of his son. Duda’s conduct was below the standard of care expected of a person in his position. Because of that, his actions rose to the level of gross negligence, an element of involuntary manslaughter, he said.
District attorneys are obligated to bring charges uniformly for there to be equal justice before the law, even when there is a situation in which a family member is killed, Spangler said.
“These are certainly tragic events,” he said. “If the person’s actions result in someone dying under circumstances that are avoidable, we are obligated to bring charges, because it is a crime against society.”
The involuntary manslaughter charge is a misdemeanor. Duda faces a maximum sentence of five years in jail and a $10,000 fine, Spangler said.
Thomas said the charges have been sent to Duda by summons.
A preliminary date has not been set. That hearing will be before District Judge Arthur K. Cook of Somerset. Attorney Carolann Young will prosecute the case.