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Father charged after gun goes off in his pocket, injuring 12-year-old boy

Chicago dad charged with accidentally shooting 12-year-old at gas station
Chicago dad charged with accidentally shooting 12-year-old at gas station 00:45

CHICAGO (CBS) -- In a wild incident that was caught on camera, a 12-year-old boy was accidentally shot by his father at a South Side gas station overnight.

The father whose gun accidentally fired has now been charged.

Police said around midnight Thursday into Friday, the boy was at the Clark gas station at 87th Street and Dorchester Avenue in the Avalon Park neighborhood, when a gun went off in the man's pocket.

Gun goes off in man's pocket and wounds child -- will he face charges? 02:30

As CBS 2 Investigator Megan Hickey reported, the boy just suffered a graze wound to the hand and was taken to the University of Chicago's Comer Children's Hospital in good condition.

But police records obtained by CBS 2 show it was his father who accidentally shot the gun.

And the whole thing would be hard to believe if it had not been caught on camera.

The video shows a 61-year-old man leaning against an ice cream cooler at the gas station. He starts digging through his pockets when the gun goes off – blasting a hole through his jeans.

Everyone at the gas station jumps.

The gun falls through the gaping hole and slips to the floor. The boy is shot and goes off camera.

Afterward, the man picks up the gun and jams it back into his pocket. 

A $20 bill was left in shreds, and bullet fragments were seen on the ground.

Employee Mohamed Said was shocked to see the video when he came in for his shift at the Clark gas station.

"It's crazy. It's really, really crazy," Said said. "How would that happen? The gun should be locked."

Said said there was at least a small silver lining.

"That was a lucky shot by accident though," he said. "It wasn't intentional - that's the thing."

Gun goes off in man's pocket, wounding child at gas station 01:47

Late Friday, the man -- Martin Guest of the Calumet Heights neighborhood -- was charged with one felony count of reckless discharge and one of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, and one misdemeanor count of causing a child to be endangered.

CBS 2 Legal Analyst Irv Miller earlier said if the man did not have a Firearm Owners Identification Card or a Concealed Carry License, he would be with unlawful use of a weapon if he's not licensed. But if he had that license, he might not have faced charges, Miller siad.

"Unless he was basically violating the criminal laws of the State of Illinois and acting either recklessly or intentionally - or there's some evidence that he was putting this child's life in danger by something that he did, which may end up an endangering the life of the child charge – I don't suspect that he would be a charged at this point in time," Miller said.

12-year-old boy shot when family member's goes off in pocket at South Side gas station 01:07

Employees of the gas station agree - it could have turned out much worse.

"Thank God we have the glass. That's protection," said Said. "Thank God no one was outside working, or anything was hurt - that's the thing."

Guest is due to appear in court for a bond hearing on Saturday.

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