Saturday, February 27, 2010

Dad charged in shooting death of 9-month-old daughter (Chesapeake, Virginia)

Dad COLTON LUMAN has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the "accidental" shooting of his 9-month-old daughter. How do you "accidentally" shoot an infant of that age? You were fighting, she grabbed the gun, and it "accidentally" went off? Give me a break.

Chesapeake police charge father in shooting death of 9-month-old

Colton Luman, 26, was arrested in the accidental shooting death of his 9-month-old daughter.

By Kristin Davis
The Virginian-Pilot
February 27, 2010

Police charged a man with involuntary manslaughter Friday, five days after his 9-month-old daughter was shot to death in their home.

Colton Luman, 26, was released on a personal recognizance bond Friday afternoon. A conviction on the felony charge would carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

Makenna Luman was shot Sunday at the family's Warbler Court home, which is on the Navy's Northwest Annex near the North Carolina border. She died at an area hospital.

Luman is a Marine sergeant assigned to the Marine Corps Security Force Regiment in Norfolk. The infantryman enlisted in 2002 and was part of the 1st Marine Division in Camp Pendleton, Calif., before moving here, military records show.

He also served in Iraq and received multiple awards, including the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, a National Defense Service Medal and a Humanitarian Service Medal.

Makenna was at home with both parents when she was shot. Authorities declined to give more details about the case because it is pending.

A spokeswoman for Chesapeake police would not say what type of weapon was used or whether any other children live there, though the obituary for Makenna says she is survived by a sister.

Chesapeake Commonwealth's Attorney Nancy Parr said Luman was charged with involuntary manslaughter because he unlawfully fired a gun in a house that was occupied.

Virginia law states that a person does not have to shoot a gun maliciously to be charged.

Luman was licensed as a guard in California for much of the past three years and had a firearm permit, according to the state's Bureau of Security and Investigative Services Web site.

Parr said Luman will be arraigned in Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, but that no date has been set. A woman who answered the Lumans' phone Friday said the family had nothing to say. An unmarked police car sat in the driveway.

A neighbor described those who live in the area as easy going people with uncomplicated lives, and the killing of a child so young left them rattled.

Makenna's death was extremely rare. The Children's Defense Fund reported that six children under the age of 1 died from gunfire in 2006, the most recent data available. All were classified as homicides. Thirteen children ages 1 to 4 died from accidental shootings that year.