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Parents sue over accidental West Valley shooting

By Amy Joi O'Donoghue  |  Posted Jan 18th, 2011 @ 10:19pm


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SALT LAKE CITY — The parents of a 3-year-old boy injured last June in an accidental shooting have filed a lawsuit against their neighbor, claiming his negligent handling of a firearm led to damages that merit compensation.

David and Lisa Hart, in their complaint filed Tuesday in 3rd District Court, say their son, David Quinlan Hart, was "happily playing" in the basement West Valley City apartment where he lived when he was shot June 4, 2010.

Their complaint says their son was shot in the hip because Ronald A. Ferguson was "carelessly" handling a 9mm handgun when it discharged in the apartment above them.

"Mr. Ferguson negligently discharged his pistol indoors in an environment where any reasonable person would have known of the danger posed to those present in the same building from flying bullets," the suit reads.

A police account at the time said Ferguson was either cleaning the gun or showing it to another person when it discharged.

The bullet caused extensive personal injuries, pain and suffering to the boy, according to the complaint.

The Harts are asking to be compensated in an amount not less than $20,000 for medical and other associated expenses, as well as punitive damages in an amount to be determined at trial.

E-mail: amyjoi@desnews.com

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