NORWALK, Calif. – An ex-convict was sentenced to prison Wednesday after a 4-year-old boy found a loaded shotgun inside a car regularly used to drive children, and accidentally shot his mother, authorities said.
Brandon Gilbert Ambriz, 24, pleaded no contest to a single count of being a felon in possession of a firearm during what was scheduled to be a court appearance to set a preliminary hearing date, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and Los Angeles County Superior Court records. He was immediately sentenced to five years in state prison.
The case stems from the January 23 shooting of a pregnant woman outside a school.
The woman’s 4-year-old son took the shotgun Ambriz had left in the backseat of the car, officials said. The child fired the gun, striking his mother in the driver’s seat. She was treated for a gunshot wound to the mid-torso, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Three other children who were also in the car were unhurt, prosecutors said.
Ambriz initially faced four charges of child abuse, in addition to the gun possession charge, according to the District Attorney’s Office. He could have faced more than 25 years in prison if convicted as originally charged.
It was not clear whether Wednesday’s court outcome was the result of a negotiated plea deal.