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Thread: Mother Warned 2-Year-Old Son Moments Before He Shot Himself in Eye

  1. #1
    Regular Member MetalChris's Avatar
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    JEWETT CITY, Conn.— Court documents show that moments before a Jewett City toddler fatally shot himself, his mother warned him not to touch his father's gun because of the "bad boo boos" it could cause.[/b]

    An arrest affidavit details how 2-year-old Wyatt Matteau grabbed the gun from a nightstand and shot himself in the eye while his mother was in the bathroom.

    On the morning of Aug. 28, Rebecca Matteau was watching TV with her son and her 3-month-old daughter, just minutes before the shooting. The children's father was sleeping in the bedroom.

    Minutes later the boy shot himself, and he died less than two hours later.

    The parents have been arrested on charges including risk of injury to a minor and criminally negligent storage of a firearm.
    Tragic.

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    Regular Member AZkopper's Avatar
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    Sometimes I feel we need to license parenting.....

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    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    No, we simply need to outlaw stupidity and the sentence is death. That way we don't have to worry about that particular part of the gene pool procreating.
    The thing about common sense is....it ain't too common.
    Will Rogers

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    rodbender wrote:
    No, we simply need to outlaw stupidity and the sentence is death. That way we don't have to worry about that particular part of the gene pool procreating.
    Nah, just repeal all the laws that protect the stupid from themselves and stop feeding them. That should thin them out a bit.

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    we don't need to do anything

    the govt doesn't need to be involved in anyway.

    the kid shot himself. its the familiy's loss. get the ******* govt out of this.

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    TipsyMcStagger wrote:
    we don't need to do anything

    the govt doesn't need to be involved in anyway.

    the kid shot himself. its the familiy's loss. get the ******* govt out of this.
    But the government won't stay out of things. That's why we have seat belt laws and child safety seat laws and Lord knows what else.

    Who owns our kids.. us or the government?

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Wow, that's horrible. Okay, the mom said don't touch because of "bad boo boos" and what use is a pistol next to the bed - which, in my opinion, tells me it was for home defense - locked up so you can't get it? Now, could they have done better? Definetly. My dad took me out when I was 3 or so and we shot mud puddles, watermelons, and other stuff that blows apart so I could see the effect of it. Got me to know REALLY WELL that the bad end of the firearm doesn't get pointed at anything I am not willing to destroy. Should there really be so much gov't in our lives? Seat belts, yes, as traffic fatalities cause gov't a TON of money every year (sorry, don't have the statistics on hand, but they are up there). Should they get involved in this? No, this family is now traumatized for the rest of their lives because of this incident. Is it truly their fault for the death of their child? Did they try to teach him about firearms? Did they make a plan to keep the child from getting near the firearm? Did they have their child watch Eddie Eagle videos? Who knows, since as with most firearm related incident articles, their is NOT ENOUGH INFO, and leave my opinions on good or bad parenting to the winds, as nothing can be neither supported nor unsupported.

  8. #8
    mdgary
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    What 2 year old knows the dangers of firearms. It is the responsibility of the parent to keep their children safe from potental hazards,If the child shows interest in the firearm that is in his/her reach the parents should imediatly put the firearm out of the childs reach. Unfortanatly, We teach our children at very young ages to point guns at each other,what I mean is water guns,cap guns,stopper guns and play guns etc.and wonder why so many accidents happen to young children and even teenagers.
    Yes and someAdults




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    This article is more detailed.
    http://www.courant.com/news/local/hc...,6085740.story


    GRISWOLD - Shortly before 2-year-old Wyatt Matteau fatally shot himself with his father's .40-caliber pistol, his mother had warned him that touching the gun meant "bad boo boos."

    Wyatt had reached for the gun and Rebecca Matteau told him "No!" as she grabbed his hand, according to arrest warrant affidavits.

    "Bad, boo, boos," Wyatt repeated to his mother.

    But during a moment of inattention -- Rebecca Matteau was using the bathroom and her husband, Jason Matteau, was sleeping in their Jewett City apartment -- Wyatt took the handgun from a nightstand next to his sleeping father and shot himself in the eye. There was usually a gate to keep Wyatt and his sister out of their parents bedroom, but it was not up the morning of Aug. 28, according to the affidavits.

    Rebecca Matteau said she heard a loud shot, then saw Wyatt run from the bedroom to the couch, where he fell. Jason Matteau said he was awakened by the gunshot and his wife screaming. Jason Matteau told detectives his son was not breathing and that he began CPR while his wife called 911.

    Wyatt Matteau was pronounced dead about 90 minutes later.

    Both Matteaus were arrested Wednesday on felony charges of criminally negligent storage of a firearm and risk of injury to a minor. They were released without having to post bail and are to be arraigned Oct. 1 in Superior Court in Norwich.

    Details of what transpired that tragic morning are contained in affidavits accompanying the warrants for each Matteau's arrest.

    The Smith & Wesson semi-automatic pistol, which did not have a safety, was in a nylon holster with no security strap on the nightstand. Jason Matteau told state police that he kept the pistol there for security.

    About two weeks before the shooting, according to the warrants, Rebecca Matteau's uncle, Wayne West, expressed concern that Wyatt would get his hands on the pistol and shoot himself. West told police that Rebecca had told him about the pistol and its location. Rebecca Matteau responded that her husband "keeps the gun up high and out of reach," according to the warrant.

    Lt. J. Paul Vance, a state police spokesman, said Friday that he hoped people understand the seriousness of keeping weapons in their homes.

    "They've got to lock them and secure them and keep them out of reach of young people," Vance said.
    Mistake #1--semi-auto with no safety. #2--no retention strap.

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    Flyer22 wrote:
    This article is more detailed.
    http://www.courant.com/news/local/hc...,6085740.story


    GRISWOLD - Shortly before 2-year-old Wyatt Matteau fatally shot himself with his father's .40-caliber pistol, his mother had warned him that touching the gun meant "bad boo boos."

    Wyatt had reached for the gun and Rebecca Matteau told him "No!" as she grabbed his hand, according to arrest warrant affidavits.

    "Bad, boo, boos," Wyatt repeated to his mother.

    But during a moment of inattention -- Rebecca Matteau was using the bathroom and her husband, Jason Matteau, was sleeping in their Jewett City apartment -- Wyatt took the handgun from a nightstand next to his sleeping father and shot himself in the eye. There was usually a gate to keep Wyatt and his sister out of their parents bedroom, but it was not up the morning of Aug. 28, according to the affidavits.

    Rebecca Matteau said she heard a loud shot, then saw Wyatt run from the bedroom to the couch, where he fell. Jason Matteau said he was awakened by the gunshot and his wife screaming. Jason Matteau told detectives his son was not breathing and that he began CPR while his wife called 911.

    Wyatt Matteau was pronounced dead about 90 minutes later.

    Both Matteaus were arrested Wednesday on felony charges of criminally negligent storage of a firearm and risk of injury to a minor. They were released without having to post bail and are to be arraigned Oct. 1 in Superior Court in Norwich.

    Details of what transpired that tragic morning are contained in affidavits accompanying the warrants for each Matteau's arrest.

    The Smith & Wesson semi-automatic pistol, which did not have a safety, was in a nylon holster with no security strap on the nightstand. Jason Matteau told state police that he kept the pistol there for security.

    About two weeks before the shooting, according to the warrants, Rebecca Matteau's uncle, Wayne West, expressed concern that Wyatt would get his hands on the pistol and shoot himself. West told police that Rebecca had told him about the pistol and its location. Rebecca Matteau responded that her husband "keeps the gun up high and out of reach," according to the warrant.

    Lt. J. Paul Vance, a state police spokesman, said Friday that he hoped people understand the seriousness of keeping weapons in their homes.

    "They've got to lock them and secure them and keep them out of reach of young people," Vance said.
    Mistake #1--semi-auto with no safety. #2--no retention strap.





    No, mistake is plain allowing the incompetent child to access the gun unsupervised.

    This accident could have been avoided in many ways.


    She could've brought it into the bathroom with her. They could've kept the gate closed. They could've put it up high enough to be out of reach (which it obviously wasn't despite her claiming it to be), and more.


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    Just moving the gun to a higher location that the kid couldn't get at would have done the trick. Was the woman not able to figure out something that simple? Something tells me this kids chances of survival wasn't all that high, with parents like this.

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    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    Sounds like extreme negligence to me.

    "Throw away the key, George, we won't be needing it any more."
    The thing about common sense is....it ain't too common.
    Will Rogers

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    Felid`Maximus wrote:
    Flyer22 snippet:
    Mistake #1--semi-auto with no safety. #2--no retention strap.

    No, mistake is plain allowing the incompetent child to access the gun unsupervised.

    This accident could have been avoided in many ways.


    She could've brought it into the bathroom with her. They could've kept the gate closed. They could've put it up high enough to be out of reach (which it obviously wasn't despite her claiming it to be), and more.
    I have to agree with you both on this one. I use a SERPA holster which, although not child proof, would definetly have kept the child away from it longer. But, I was also taught when you supervise children, you can't take your eye off of them for a second. If you have to have them play some where that you can see them while you are using the facilities, so be it. Heck, if you have to, take the child to the bathroom with you. OK, maybe not such a good idea in this day and age ("Wow, he always takes the kid to the bathroom with him, probably a pedophile"), but you get my point. And yes, putting it up higher would have done the trick. Also, move it some where OTHER than where the child saw it. Things like this for a toddler really are out of sight out of mind.

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    mdgary
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    Regular Member MamaLiberty's Avatar
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    While almost anything is possible, I'm having a hard time believing this story as presented. A semi-auto is heavy and even my hands are not large enough or strong enough to shoot all of them - and I do know HOW.

    Have you thought about how SMALL the hands of a 2 year old are? How did he both hold the gun backwards (only way he could have held it) and reach the trigger?

    I can't see how that happened. Someone enlighten me. Maybe he just dropped it.

    Also, a 2 year old is probably too young to benefit much from being taken out to shoot. At this age they must be protected from themselves. Leaving the gun that easily available - even if it had a safety engaged - was very unsafe.
    I will not knowingly initiate force. I am a self owner.

    Let the record show that I did not consent to be governed. I did not consent to any constitution. I did not consent to any president. I did not consent to any law except the natural law of "mala en se." I did not consent to the police. Nor any tax. Nor any prohibition of anything. Nor any regulation or licensing of any kind.

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    MamaLiberty wrote:
    While almost anything is possible, I'm having a hard time believing this story as presented. A semi-auto is heavy and even my hands are not large enough or strong enough to shoot all of them - and I do know HOW.

    Have you thought about how SMALL the hands of a 2 year old are? How did he both hold the gun backwards (only way he could have held it) and reach the trigger?

    I can't see how that happened. Someone enlighten me. Maybe he just dropped it.

    I wondered about the same thing. I can only imagine that it was a small semi-auto. If in DA mode, that would require some pressure to squeeze the trigger, that a small child may or may not have. It's possible the grip was against the floor with the muzzle pointing up and the child had a finger or thumb on the trigger and was leaning over while pressing down. That's my guess....


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    I see from the article that there was only one round in the gun. Had the parent merely moved that one round to the magazine this heartbreaking tragedy could have been avoided. I see that my assumption that all parents/guardians of children should know how to "child proof" a house is mistaken. It seems this man was expecting a zombieto enter his home and did not understand the real dangers he was facing.

    If anyone knows someone like this man, please try to educate or intervene to help them safeguard their family. I'm sure he wishes now that someone could have.

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    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    Probablya coupleof those "It won't happen to me" people.
    The thing about common sense is....it ain't too common.
    Will Rogers

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    DenWin wrote:
    Wow, that's horrible. Okay, the mom said don't touch because of "bad boo boos" and what use is a pistol next to the bed - which, in my opinion, tells me it was for home defense - locked up so you can't get it? Now, could they have done better? Definetly. My dad took me out when I was 3 or so and we shot mud puddles, watermelons, and other stuff that blows apart so I could see the effect of it. Got me to know REALLY WELL that the bad end of the firearm doesn't get pointed at anything I am not willing to destroy. Should there really be so much gov't in our lives? Seat belts, yes, as traffic fatalities cause gov't a TON of money every year (sorry, don't have the statistics on hand, but they are up there). Should they get involved in this? No, this family is now traumatized for the rest of their lives because of this incident. Is it truly their fault for the death of their child? Did they try to teach him about firearms? Did they make a plan to keep the child from getting near the firearm? Did they have their child watch Eddie Eagle videos? Who knows, since as with most firearm related incident articles, their is NOT ENOUGH INFO, and leave my opinions on good or bad parenting to the winds, as nothing can be neither supported nor unsupported.
    This mother made numerous mistakes and unfortunately, paid the price of her errors with her son's life. If there was a father involved, by this I mean a current part of the domain's family, then he must also bear responsibility for this terrible tragedy. I raised two daughters successfully in a home where firearms were part of the environment and as natural and normal as a lawnmower. But you can bet I didn't take ANYTHING for granted in these areas. Same for my grandson and granddaughter (2 and 6), and the children of neighbors. My take is simple. Anything that can happen, very well may happen when the responsible party lacks responsibility.

    As for seat belt laws, I detest them since they are an invasion of my person and my domain (car). I would never dream of moving any of my vehicles off of my property without first buckling up. I sure don't need some bureaucratic governmental agency to tell me this.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
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    TipsyMcStagger wrote:
    we don't need to do anything

    the govt doesn't need to be involved in anyway.

    the kid shot himself. its the familiy's loss. get the ******* govt out of this.
    +1

  22. #22
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    Let me ask a question, in the most respectful way possible, of the people who think that there should be no criminal charges in this case.

    Is there anything whatsoever that a parent can do or not do, with respect to their own children, that should cause criminal charges to be brought against them?

    If so, is there a "bright line" between that and this case? Where is it?

    If not, ... okey-dokey. Just asking.

    I am not trying to bait you or get into an argument, I just want to understand your point of view. Really.

    regards,

    GR

    PS: I don't mean to hijack the thread or take it OT. If anybody thinks that I am doing that, just ignore me.

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    Criminality requires mens rea. There is none here, only grief.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mens_rea

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    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    Doug Huffman wrote:
    Criminality requires mens rea. There is none here, only grief.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mens_rea
    And for criminal negligence

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criminal_negligence
    The thing about common sense is....it ain't too common.
    Will Rogers

  25. #25
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    Doug Huffman (21 September 2008 Sunday 19:02) replies:

    Criminality requires mens rea.
    So, you regard the concept of criminal negligence, as noted by rodbender (21 September 2008 Sunday 19:20), as invalid, at least within the parent-child relation? Is that correct?

    regards,

    GR

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