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BSO offers firearm safety class in wake of accidental shootings

Course scheduled Tuesday at BSO Cooper City district building

COOPER CITY, Fla. – The Broward Sheriff's Office Cooper City district is offering a free firearms safety class for children in the wake of two accidental shootings.

Children ages 11 to 14 are welcome to attend the class, and parents are encouraged to attend as well.

The announcement of the gun safety course comes a day after police said a father accidentally shot his 12-year-old daughter while teaching her about gun safety.

The shooting was reported shortly before 8 p.m. Sunday in the 7700 block of Northwest 34th Street in Davie.

Police said the man was showing his daughter how to safely draw a weapon from his pocket when it fired.

The girl was shot in the forearm and was taken to Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital in Hollywood, where she was being treated for the non-life-threatening injury.

"I know only him, and he's nice and he's good," neighbor Gelu Muscalu said. "And if it was an accident, it really was an accident."

Neighbors told Local 10 News reporter Terrell Forney that the father is a landscaper who often helps people in the area with their yards.

It's unclear whether the father will face charges.

Last Thursday, a 14-year-old was taken into custody after he shot his friend while playing with his stepfather's handgun, deputies said.

The teen faces a manslaughter charge in the case and is being held in a juvenile detention center until his next hearing, scheduled for later this month.

Deputies said the teen believed that the gun was unloaded when he shot Charlie Martin, 14, in the head.

Martin was pronounced dead at the scene.

Topics that will be discussed in the BSO gun safety course include:

-Safety rules for secure handgun storage

-Responsibilities of gun owners to properly secure and store firearms

-Dangers of toy guns vs. real guns

-A review of scenarios dealing with finding firearms in the home or presenting them in public

The course will offered from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the BSO Cooper City district building at 10580 Stirling Road.

Refreshments and free gun locks will be provided.

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