Expert: Gun firing on its own 'impossible' - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Expert: Gun firing on its own 'impossible'

An expert said the only way a gun could fire besides pulling the trigger is a worn sear combined with a sudden drop or jar. An expert said the only way a gun could fire besides pulling the trigger is a worn sear combined with a sudden drop or jar.

Early Monday morning, 17-year-old Kedrick Bowman was shot in the head at the family's home on Cotton Place in Decatur. Stepmother Cynthia Bowman told authorities she had the gun in her hand as she hugged her stepson and the gun went off.

She also said the gun was faulty and went off on its own outside the house as she carried it in from a vehicle. Officers said the Bowmans also called police last year to report the gun firing while sitting unattended on a dresser.

WAFF spoke to a gun expert about the possibility of a gun firing on its own. The licensed gunsmith we spoke to was in law enforcement for nearly 20 years. He did not wish to be identified because he is often called to testify in cases such as this, and this particular case is an ongoing investigation.

The gunsmith did describe the operating system for Cobra .380 caliber pistols like the one involved in the fatal shooting. Regarding the claim the gun went off by itself, he said that is impossible.

A device called a sear holds the firing pin in the cocked position until enough pressure is placed on the trigger to move the transfer bar down to release the firing pin. The gun expert said the only other way besides pulling the trigger to fire the gun is if the sear is extremely worn and the gun is jarred, possibly if it was dropped and hit the ground hard.

Decatur Police have not filed charges, but the grand jury could send down an indictment. The gun involved in Kedrick Bowman's death has been sent for forensic testing, the results of which will be presented to a grand jury.

Visitation for Kedrick is set for Friday at Jackson Memory Funeral Home from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The funeral will be held Saturday at noon at R. A. Hubbard High School in Courtland, with burial to follow at Jones Cemetery in Town Creek.

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