Grovetown 13-year-old accidentally killed in Halloween shooting

14-year-old classmate charged

Thursday, Nov. 1, 2012 10:47 AM
Last updated Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 1:48 AM
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A 14-year-old Grovetown Middle School pupil has been charged in the Halloween shooting death of a 13-year-old classmate.

Kristen Burnett, 13, died at her home in Grovetown.  SPECIAL
Kristen Burnett, 13, died at her home in Grovetown.

Kristen Burnett, 13, was pronounced dead about 11:15 p.m. in her home in the 5000 block of Reynolds Way, Columbia County Coroner Vernon Collins said.

A 14-year-old boy, who was not identified, is charged with involuntary manslaughter for accidentally shooting her with a shotgun, Grovetown Department of Public Safety Capt. Donovan Jones said. He’s being held in the Regional Youth Detention Center.

“It’s carelessness with a firearm,” Grovetown Chief Gary Owens said. “These kids are friends. There’s no maliciousness. It is just a senseless tragedy.”

Burnett and three friends were hanging out at her house, Collins said. The victim’s mother, Miriam Lunsford, was not home and her stepfather, Steven Lunsford Jr., is an Army soldier deployed to Afghanistan.

The 14-year-old boy went looking through the house and found a 12-gauge shotgun loaded with double-aught shells in the master bedroom.

“She was sitting in a chair in the dining room at her laptop,” Collins said. “She was struck in the head by the projectiles from the shotgun.”

The boy “accidentally discharged” the gun in the den and hit Burnett in the dining room 22-25 feet away, Jones said.

“If there’s a firearm at the house, it needs a gun lock on it,” Collins said. “It’s so inexpensive when it comes you your child’s life or anybody’s life.”

The investigation is ongoing, Owens said.

Grief counselors were at Grovetown Middle School on Thursday to help pupils deal with Burnett’s death.

“Our heart goes out to the family and the school children,” Owens said.

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myfather15 11/02/12 - 04:29 pm

No, you didn't mention a ban but may I remind you of what you said; "at some point that firearm is going to be used - and you will either kill another HUMAN BEING or they will use it to kill YOU or you will kill YOURSELF. It will not be used for a fun time, for lively conversation or to invoke warm memories."

You didn't mention animals at all in this statement. You only referred to guns killing human beings. You actually didn't use the word "Death" not a single time.

Also, it is not my understanding that is wrong, it's yours. Just because YOU believe something, deep in your heart, doesn't make you right. You need to prove your statement but you can't because it's absolutely wrong.

You said "Whether it is animals or human beings, firearms serve no other purpose other than to kill. "

Really? Tell that to a very good friend of mine who left the Sheriffs Office to become a professional marksman and makes 6 figures a years in competition shooting. And he has never shot anything but targets. Ooooh, I guess he is killing that poor innocent piece of paper. Wait, I also watched him throw six eggs over his shoulder, then turn and shoot every one of them before they hit the ground, so I guess he killed those eggs as well. What a murderous beast he is!!!

You also said; "Firearms have the sole purpose of discharging a bullet to enact lethal destruction on its target."

So, if the target is a watermelon, is that lethal destruction? Again, this is where you are overstepping your bounds, with this gun hating agenda. Because what you are saying is NOT TRUE AT ALL. It's just your opinion that you are spouting as TRUTH. When the reality is, it couldn't be farther from the truth.

For those of you who think this isn't the time for this argument, I don't disagree and I apoligize. But I will not sit back and allow THEM to spout their untruths, and gun hating agenda, without using truth to refute it. This rhetoric makes absolutely no sense, and I for one will stand up against it, where ever I see it.

Woodchip 11/02/12 - 08:28 pm
Sad Situation

I always hate to hear about things like this. Kids can find so much to get into to. It's almost certain the boy didn't mean to shoot the young lady. We all make bad decisions and some times with drastic results that we will have to live with forever. Be careful parents not to let bitterness into your heart and mabey lose a good friend. Everyone involved in this is hurting. Look to God for your help and be quick to forgive. God has a purpose for everything and we seldom know what it is, but God does all things well and one day we will know why. May God Bless You!

Tullie 11/03/12 - 06:30 am
Forum Comments

Keep the negative comments and speculations to yourselves. Period

So many things to say... there is a time for everything in life and right now is not the time but other to express condolences to all the ones involved.

There are more but this will get my point across. This is the News forum, people are commenting and expressing their opinions. Generally about things and people they do not know and basing their opinions and comments upon the article in the paper.

Some people seem to think this forum is not the proper place to do so. They think only condolences and charitable comments should be made. I thought that is what the obituary comment section was for and also that is why you went to the funeral home and or to the person's home.

People do not think they are perfect or have perfect children or were perfect as a child themselves.

When you see a headline that a 13-year old was accidently shot. You read the story and find a 14-year old boy was looking through the house and finds a shotgun in the master bedroom. You also read the mother was not home and it is after 11:00 PM. There is apparently no adult supervision and you have four young teenagers home alone.

I think in the news forum it is appropriate to make comments and wonder what could have lead up to these events.

CobaltGeorge 11/03/12 - 06:49 pm

consider the source.

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