LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas father whose toddler was fatally shot by another toddler has been sentenced to probation for leaving a loaded semi-automatic handgun within the children’s reach.
33-year-old Chance Smith, of Lawrence, is barred from having guns while on probation under the sentence ordered Wednesday. He pleaded no contest in September to two counts of aggravated child endangerment. Prosecutors dropped an involuntary manslaughter charge as part of the plea.
Smith’s daughter, Autumn Grace Smith, was a week away from her second birthday when she was shot in September 2017. Smith told police that he was outside for five or 10 minutes and didn’t hear a gunshot. When he returned, he found a 2-year-old boy crying and Autumn upstairs, shot. Gunpowder was found on the boy’s hands.