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Posted: 1/4/2007 1:28:17 AM EDT
Volusia shooting death puts focus on gun safety
A man who accidentally killed his friend said he played with guns often, according to police.

Kristen Reed
Orlando Sentinel Staff Writer
January 3, 2007

A 20-year-old who accidentally shot his friend in the forehead minutes before New Year's Day wasn't following a key rule of gun safety: Always assume a gun is loaded.

Sean Page told investigators he often jokes and plays around with guns and it's common for him and his friends to point the firearms at one another.

"Never point it at anything you don't want to kill," said Bob Applegate, who runs the shooting range for the Volusia County Sheriff's Office. "Every handgun should be considered loaded at all times. That's a standard rule."

Safety guidelines published by the National Rifle Association say gun users should keep weapons pointed in a safe direction and keep their fingers off the trigger until they are ready to shoot.

Page told investigators he placed the barrel of the .45-caliber handgun on John Debella Jr.'s temple in jest when Debella, 19, grabbed the gun to place it at the center of his forehead. Page said that moved his hand slightly, causing him to press against the trigger.

"I shot him. I shot him, he pushed my finger . . . I can't believe I was dumb enough to have my finger on the trigger," he blurted out to officials at the Derbyshire Road home before his arrest on a manslaughter charge.

Kerry Scullin, Page's mother, was home with her 4-month-old baby during the incident. She declined to comment Tuesday.Page remains in jail without bail.

Page said he did not know the gun was loaded and he keeps his finger inside the trigger guard based on training he received in the Army, where he says he remains on active duty, investigative reports state.

Details about Page's enlistment and training were not known Tuesday, as federal offices recognized a national day of mourning for President Gerald Ford. According to the Army's Web site, all recruits learn basic rifle marksmanship as early as the third week of the nine-week basic training.

The fourth week is dedicated to the topic, which includes safety guidelines, range procedures and target shooting.

Applegate, who was not speaking specifically about this weekend's incident, said he always teaches gun users to keep their finger outside the trigger guard because it's easy to accidentally fire a weapon. All it takes is a startled move or involuntary response for something to go wrong, he said.

Sunday night's shooting was at least the fifth in Volusia County since April that was the result of an accidental discharge. One was fatal.

Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home.

Her brother-in-law committed suicide with a gun, and one of John Jr.'s classmates accidentally shot his twin brother to death when the boys were in seventh grade, she said.

Debella said she's trying to be as compassionate as her son would be.

She is not sure she wants long jail time for Page.

"Johnny wouldn't want it to turn out the way it's turning out," she said.

Kristen Reed can be reached at kreed@orlandosentinel.com or 386-851-7924.


www.orlandosentinel.com/news/local/volusia/orl-shooting0307jan03,0,6067546.story?coll=orl-news-headlines-volusia




Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:29:53 AM EDT
Fehhhh....

Like we all haven't shot our buddies in the head.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:32:02 AM EDT
Just your typical gun owner.  I highly doubt he learned the proper procedure for a 1911 in the Army, They were phased out about the time he was born.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:32:23 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:46:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By swingset:
Fehhhh....

Like we all haven't shot our buddies in the head.


Dick Cheney Who...what...
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:49:03 AM EDT
Naturally it's the guns fault.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:53:55 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hipster:
Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home.

Her brother-in-law committed suicide with a gun, and one of John Jr.'s classmates accidentally shot his twin brother to death when the boys were in seventh grade, she said.


Sounds like this family has a lot of bad luck with guns.  
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 1:54:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hipster:

Originally Posted By Hipster:
Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home.

Her brother-in-law committed suicide with a gun, and one of John Jr.'s classmates accidentally shot his twin brother to death when the boys were in seventh grade, she said.


Sounds like this family has a lot of bad luck with guns.  


Family hell, the COUNTY.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:10:20 AM EDT

"You're only issued so many Stupid Tickets, then you die..."
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:15:16 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:25:29 AM EDT
Well obviously the gun went off and pointed itself at the nearest person all by itself. We need to ban them for the children.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:29:44 AM EDT
Man that must have made quite the cherry pie splash!
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:32:16 AM EDT
Jeff Cooper's Rules of Gun Safety



RULE I: ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED

RULE II: NEVER LET THE MUZZLE COVER ANYTHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DESTROY


RULE III: KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER UNTIL YOUR SIGHTS ARE ON THE TARGET

RULE IV: BE SURE OF YOUR TARGET
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:35:37 AM EDT

I shot him. I shot him, he pushed my finger . . . I can't believe I was dumb enough to have my finger on the trigger," he blurted out to officials at the Derbyshire Road home before his arrest on a manslaughter charge.

Kerry Scullin, Page's mother, was home with her 4-month-old baby during the incident. She declined to comment Tuesday.Page remains in jail without bail.

Page said he did not know the gun was loaded and he keeps his finger inside the trigger guard based on training he received in the Army, where he says he remains on active duty, investigative reports state.


there's alot of things that don't make sense here.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:43:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hipster:

Originally Posted By Hipster:
Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home.

Her brother-in-law committed suicide with a gun, and one of John Jr.'s classmates accidentally shot his twin brother to death when the boys were in seventh grade, she said.


Sounds like this family has a lot of bad luck with guns.  


Maybe a little more experience would have been a good thing.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 4:47:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Big_Bear:
Stupid hurts.

Sometimes it kills.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:04:06 AM EDT
Well, another Darwin story.
Won't be able to buff that one out!
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:09:36 AM EDT
Jesus.  

Congrats there fucktard.  Now do us all a favor and repeat the process on your own forehead.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:13:18 AM EDT
"Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home."

If they had allowed guns in the house and taught the kids proper gun safety this probaly would not have happened.  This is another exampe of why it is better to "gun proof the kid, not kidproof the gun."  Stupid kills.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:16:46 AM EDT
That's it...ban all friends!
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:20:23 AM EDT
His buddy needs an award too, seriously... who lets someone else put a gun to their head. Loaded or not, no one EVER points a gun at me without a verbal or physical lashing.
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:24:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By opti12206:
"Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home."

If they had allowed guns in the house and taught the kids proper gun safety this probaly would not have happened.  This is another exampe of why it is better to "gun proof the kid, not kidproof the gun."  Stupid kills.


Exactly.  I would hope my kids would have never got to the point where they would allow some asshole to put a muzzle anywhere near them.  I've pushed people's (filled) hands away from me at a gunshow and a gunshop twice in the past couple years.  The response was the same both times, "It's not loaded".  
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:26:52 AM EDT
I don't think I'd be able to live with myself if I killed a friend with an ND...
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:27:12 AM EDT
Remember, anyone who shoots you in the head is not really your friend
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:29:23 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/4/2007 5:32:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By amd_dude:

Originally Posted By Hipster:

Originally Posted By Hipster:
Debella's mother, Martha, said she was shocked to hear her son was involved in horseplay with guns. Since he and his brother, Joseph, were "old enough to crawl," she said, she and her husband stressed the dangers of firearms. She said they never allowed them in their home.I guess one shouldn't "play" with potentially lethal objects one knows nothing about

Her brother-in-law committed suicide with a gun, and one of John Jr.'s classmates accidentally shot his twin brother to death when the boys were in seventh grade, she said.


Sounds like this family has a lot of bad luck stupid incidents with guns.  



Maybe a little more experience common sense would have been a good thing.
 

Also the statement about being trained in the Army to keep your finger in the trigger guard is pure unadulterated bullshit! I've been trained in both the Army as well as the Marines. He f#cked up. His "friend" is dead because of it. Sorry, Game over.
It's real easy to blame an inanimate object. It can't defend or justify it's self.
Hessian-1
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