Florida man charged after toddler fatally shot mom during Zoom call

Florida man charged after toddler fatally shot mom during Zoom call

A Florida man was arrested Tuesday in the shooting death of a woman who was on a Zoom call when her 2-year-old fired a gun, officials said.

Veondre Avery, 22, the child’s father, faces charges of manslaughter and failure to securely store a firearm in the Aug. 11 killing of Shamaya Lynn, 21, the state attorney’s office said in a statement.

The toddler found the gun, which went off while Lynn was on a Zoom call with co-workers, in the couple’s home in Altamonte Springs, officials said.

Another person on the call called 911 and reported hearing a noise before Lynn suddenly fell backward. When police arrived, officers found Avery performing CPR on Lynn, prosecutors said.

Avery was arrested Tuesday and was in custody Tuesday night. Online court records did not appear to show a case, and it was not clear if he had an attorney.

Neither of the two children who were at the home at the time were injured in the shooting, police said.

“I know it’s tragic, I know it may not have been something that that person wanted to do, but now you have consequences,” Altamonte Springs Police Officer Rob Ruiz told reporters Tuesday.

The state attorney’s office said a police investigation determined the gun was in a “Paw Patrol” backpack in the couple’s bedroom.

A single shot was fired, and “forensic evidence clearly established that the child possessed and independently fired the weapon,” the prosecutor’s office said. Lynn was shot in the head.

A partially redacted 911 call audio shows a man, apparently Avery, pleading with emergency medical personnel to hurry. He told the dispatcher he just got home and found his girlfriend on the floor bleeding and had no idea what happened. In the audio, he counts as he does CPR before help arrives.

Ruiz said gun owners have a responsibility to secure their firearms. Police have urged gun owners to keep their weapons locked.

Altamonte Springs is a city of around 43,800 north of Orlando.