SOUTHPORT, Fla. (WFLA) — A 32-year-old woman is facing several charges in Florida after deputies say a child in her care was shot by a younger sibling.
According to the Bay County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were called to a home in Southport around 2 a.m. Thursday for a medical emergency. When they got to the scene, deputies say they found a 7-year-old child with a gunshot wound, bleeding on the bathroom floor and being held by a caregiver.
A post on the sheriff’s office Facebook page identified the caregiver as 32-year-old Kayla Tully. Deputies say Tully told them the dog started barking at some point, and she left a 20-guage shotgun leaning against the back door of the home as she went to the front door to check why the dog was barking.
Tully said she then “dozed off” on the couch and was later woken up by another child telling her the 7-year-old had been shot, the sheriff’s office says. Deputies say Tully told them she did not hear the gunshot.
According to deputies, there were five children under the age of 10 in the home when first responders arrived. Tully told officials she regularly kept a loaded gun by the back door of the home, the sheriff’s office says.
Investigators believe the 7-year-old was shot by a younger sibling with the unattended gun while Tully slept, according to the sheriff’s office.
The child who was shot was rushed to a nearby hospital. The sheriff’s office has not released any information on the child’s condition.
Tully was arrested and charged with cruelty toward a child – aggravated abuse, four counts of child neglect and unsafe storage of a firearm.