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Toddler shoots mother in Idaho Wal-Mart

The local Kootenai County Sheriff's Office said the shooting "appears to be accidental."
A Walmart store. (Lucy Nicholson/Reuters)
A Walmart store.

A 29-year-old mother was fatally shot Tuesday morning by her two-year-old son while shopping at a Wal-Mart in Hayden, Idaho. The local Kootenai County Sheriff's Office said the shooting "appears to be accidental."

Wal-Mart employees evacuated the store after the gun went off, according to KTBV. Investigators used both video surveillance in the store and eyewitness testimony to determine the incident was accidental, the local news station reported.

The woman, whose name has not been released, was shopping at the Wal-Mart with her son and four other family members when the two-year-old reached into her purse and discharged the weapon. The victim -- who died from an apparent gunshot wound before police arrived -- had a concealed weapons permit, officials said.

Wal-Mart spokesperson Brooke Buchanan told msnbc that “a very sad and tragic incident happened today at our Hayden, Idaho store involving a female customer and we’re working closely with the local sheriff's department while they investigate what happened.”

The Hayden Wal-Mart will remain closed until further notice, Buchanan told msnbc.

This incident comes after the high-profile death of John Crawford, who was shot by police while holding a toy “BB gun” rifle in a Wal-Mart in  Beavercreek, Ohio. His death was ruled a homicide by the Montgomery County coroner’s office.

Crawford’s family filed a civil lawsuit against the police officers involved and Wal-Mart, alleging that Wal-Mart was partly to blame because the store had left the BB gun unpackaged on the shelf in the store for at least two days. They said it was a violation of Wal-Mart policy at other stores.