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Parents arrested, face child abuse charges after 4-year-old dies from self-inflicted gunshot

MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- The parents of the young boy who died Tuesday afternoon are in custody and face child abuse charges.

At 12:30 p.m., Manitou Springs Police were dispatched to the 400 block of Manitou Avenue on a report of a shot being fired. At the scene, officers found a 4-year-old child dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office Major Crimes Unit was asked to lead the investigation. According to the sheriff's office, the 4-year-old was with his mother and a younger sibling in a vehicle while his father went into Maggie's Farm, a marijuana dispensary.

That's when the child discovered a gun and shot himself. The child was pronounced dead at the scene.

Authorities arrested the 4-year-old's parents, Ashlynne Perez, 25, and Carlos Perez, 26.

They were both booked into the El Paso County Jail for the charge of Criminally Negligent Child Abuse Resulting in Death.

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office asks parents to talk to their children about firearms, even if they don't own any. The sheriff's office says guns should be stored unloaded and locked up, with all keys hidden.

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Shelby Filangi

Shelby is a digital content producer for You can learn more about Shelby here.



    1. I’m sure the pot helps them to be more responsible! If marijuana wasn’t legal this may not have happened (unfortunately I too voted in favor of marijuana, I regret it every day I’m driving and get to smell it).

      1. @kollege
        The pot doesn’t matter one way or the other…they dont look like they too much sense between the two of them.

    2. Sounds like you are trying to suggest that this person is a typical responsible gun owner. You can not group all gun owners into this. That is wrong. Just like drivers, there are responsible ones who you will never hear of in the news and those who are not. 99.99% of gun owners are responsible and wouldn’t allow this to happen.

      1. I interpreted Torigan’s response as:
        “They are already 10 cents short upstairs.”

  1. Allowing his young children access to a gun is not being a responsible gun owner. Believe federal law does not allow drug users to purchase guns. It is still illegal under federal law.

    1. @CJGUY incorrect, users are just normal citizens…yes they can have a firearm but the two cannot be stored together. what your thinking is the producers of pot they cant have guns anywhere on a grow.

      1. Torigan you are incorrect, Go read 18 U.S.C 922(g)(3)

        It shall be unlawful for any person—
        (3) who is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802));

        The Federal Gun Control Act of 1968 and the Federal Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1997 make it illegal for a person who fits into any of the following categories to ship, transport, receive or possess firearms or ammunition.

        Persons who are unlawful users of or are addicted to narcotics or any other controlled substances, including medical marijuana.

        Federal law prohibits medical marijuana users from possessing or buying firearms and ammunition — even if state law allows the drugs use.

      2. Tor you are wrong. On the background check form you have to certify under penalty of law that you are not a marijuana user or another other illegal drug. The state did come out a few years ago and stated that if you have a red card(MMJ license)you legally can not purchase a firearm. This goes for rec users also.

    2. Legal or not, mixing guns with any drugs (legal or not), including alcohol, is not good.

  2. Hopefully both parents will face consequences. This town has a bad habit of punishing only one person. There have been way too many of these innocents lost in this horrifying way!

  3. this is a horrible tragedy-preventable as well- a baby got his Wings yesterday.
    Some eyewitnesses stated Maggie’s Farm was pretty cold about the whole incident- did not close-just moved the line at the door over so their customers would be outside the police tape.Never flinched.

  4. “the 4-year-old was with his mother and a younger sibling in a vehicle while his father went into Maggie’s Farm, a marijuana dispensary”
    So Mom was in the car when this happened….. what they just kept a loaded weapon on the seat in the back of the car? What do you want to be that they were not legal owners or another “gangster” playing it hard and his kids paid the ultimate price.

  5. Mom was probably on her phone texting instead of interracting with the kids. Load gun, in a car…..lets get stoned and then go shoot at things. Poor baby had no chance.

    1. My thoughts exactly. I own a gun and would never think of having a round loaded and ready to fire until I’m ready to shoot. All my time in the military we were always trained don’t chamber a round until you are ready to fire the weapon. When I was in Baghdad, the same policy applied and we only chambered a round if we entered the Red Zone. I know this doesn’t apply to the police and such and they need to ready at a moment’s notice. But the everyday Joe doesn’t need to keep a gun ready to fire. My perspective is the time it takes to chamber a round gives you just a bit more time to access the situation before firing.

  6. This is horrific. If I were the parents, I wouldn’t be able to live with myself after something like that. I hope some good comes of this and his parents either clean themselves up or the younger sibling finds themself in a better home.

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