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Accidental Shooting of Costumed Girl Is Grim Call For Halloween Safety

Scare reminds us to be extra careful on Halloween

It sounded too bizarre to be true, but the outcome was terribly real.

A nine-year-old girl was shot outside her western Pennsylvania home during a Halloween party by a relative who thought she was a skunk.

According to the Scranton Times-Tribune:

New Sewickley Township police say the girl was over a hillside and wearing a black costume and a black hat with a white tassel. Chief Ronald Leindecker says a male relative mistook her for a skunk and fired a shotgun, hitting her in the shoulder Saturday night.

Leindecker tells the Beaver County Times that the girl was alert and talking when she was flown to a hospital in Pittsburgh, about 30 miles away. Her condition was unavailable.

Leindecker says the man hadn’t been drinking and he doesn’t know whether charges will be filed.

Thankfully, accidents like this are exceedingly rare. Even so, Halloween poses risks, especially for young trick-or-treaters.

Following are some tips from the Pennsylvania State Police to make this Halloween fun and safe:

  • Parents should accompany children on their rounds. If a parent isn’t available, someone the parents trust should go with the children.
  • Trick-or-treat only during times established by the local municipality, and visit only those homes with the porch light on.
  • Children should walk on the sidewalk, not the road, when possible. They should walk facing oncoming traffic and cross streets only at crosswalks, not between cars.
  • Children should avoid wearing masks that obstruct their vision.
  • Costumes should be flame retardant and fit properly.
  • Children should wear reflective clothing or patches on their costumes. Carrying a flashlight is a good idea.
  • Parents should check treats before they are eaten.
  • Parents should report any suspicious activity to local police.

Free Consultation With a Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney

The experienced Scranton personal injury lawyers at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys hope your Halloween holiday is all treat and no tricks. For more than 50 years we have assisted people and families in Pennsylvania whose lives have been disrupted by an accident or injury. Call 877-763-2343 for a free consultation about your legal rights and options, or use this online contact form.

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