Passively Constructed Negligent Discharge Story of the Day: Let’s Sort This Out Edition

"A view of the Unique Thrift Store in the 9300 block of South Ashland Avenue in Chicago, where a woman was fatally shot in the chest when a gun accidentally discharged." (caption and photo courtesy

“Worker sorting clothes dies when gun goes off in thrift store” That’s the headline from the Chicago Tribune. And how, pray tell, did this gun “go off” all on its own? Carmen Dominguez, 54, was shot shortly before 10 a.m. at the Unique Thrift store in the 9300 block of South Ashland Avenue, police said. The co-worker told police he discovered a sock with something in it and emptied the sock into his hand, according to a police statement. A .22-caliber handgun slipped out of the sock and accidentally discharged in his hand, striking Dominguez in the chest, police said.” So no muzzle was aimed and no trigger was pulled. Riiiight. You could also file this one under This Is What Happens to a Disarmed Populace: Gun Safety Goes Out the Window Edition. Just sayin’.


  1. avatar Michael B. says:

    I could see this easily happening with a derringer that’s already been cocked.

    1. avatar peirsonb says:

      Or a Caracal dropped from a height of more than 3″…..

      1. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

        If you can find one…

    2. avatar Hannibal says:

      That was my thought as well. Definitely possible in that scenario, and a .22 would fit.

      It’s also possible he ‘found’ it, screwed around with it, and ended up pulling the trigger.

  2. avatar Anonymous says:

    I don’t know, but I miss Leonard Embody’s satirical troll statements.

    We need Leonard… or maybe… TotenGlocke around here to drop a troll bomb – you know… just for entertainment purposes.

    1. avatar William Burke says:

      I never found Leonard “entertaining” in the least. A troll is a troll is a troll, and the understand their role.

    2. avatar CA.Ben says:

      Their comments would get moderated into oblivion anyways.

  3. avatar former water walker says:

    .I’ve been in this store. Horrible crappy neighborhood. I stopped going to large portions of Chicago because of armed 15 year olds. For ONCE I think you’re WAY OFF BASE. The poor Mexican lady had no idea what she had. My sympathy to her family.

    1. avatar The average American says:

      Why are you yelling at me mid-sentence?

    2. avatar neiowa says:

      So was she a Mexican or an American citizen/legal alien?

      If an illegal alien, squatting in the US, then the proximate cause of her injury is her lawless actions of entering the US and anything else that followed is of no interest or relevance.

    3. avatar JLR84 says:

      Plenty of these articles involve people doing stupid things that lead to their own death, but this isn’t one of them. No one sorting clothes at a thrift store expects a loaded pistol to fall out of a sock.

      1. avatar Ginnit says:

        Thank you for your compassion. The other guy preaching his illegal immigration views saddened me. This is no way for an innocent woman to go, illegal or otherwise.

  4. avatar Duke of Sharon says:

    If teen pregnancy can be averted by sex ed then surely these tragedies can be solved with gun safety classes in schools, right?

    All federally funded of course and, just as abstinence from sex is not promoted, it will be treated as normal and a given that guns are just a part of life.

    1. avatar slidesauce says:

      Exactily. Education is the only thing that stands in the way of a negligent discharge. . . And an accidental shooting too…

      1. avatar ropingdown says:

        Yep. Ought to send them all to Police Chief school…

    2. avatar Cliff H says:

      An interesting concept, except –

      Teen pregnancy does not seem to have been reduced by obligatory sex-ed classes.
      Abortion as a means of birth control continues to kill millions of unborn children every year.

      Perhaps the problem is only HOW the education is delivered and emphasizing that actions have consequences. If you provide education about sex, you get sex. (And babies.) If you provide sex education and a moral obligation to accept the consequences of “negligent discharge” rather than take a human life, then perhaps it will have some value.

      I strongly support rational firearms education at the grade school level, possibly around ten to twelve years old. This should be a mandatory course and taught by trained firearms instructors, not Union teachers. I also support the concept of an official boot-camp summer between the junior and senior years as a requirement for a high school diploma. This would be training, not conscription, and any further military training/service should be voluntary.

      With those two activities we would have a generation that was familiar with guns, with people who knew and understood guns, and with the basic concepts of military organization, function and discipline. It would be difficult for the anti-2A crowd to fight against that, IMO.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Sex-ed seems more like a “how to” guide for the emotionally immature.

        1. avatar Avid Reader says:

          It worked for me, but then again I was diligent about doing my homework.

          Could have used a study partner, though. . .

        2. avatar ropingdown says:

          Our sex-ed program saved a lot of girls from some really inexperienced know-nothing guys. It was taught by a local female physician, and aside from the usual material she pointed out that there was this little bit up above the usual point of focus that was much more important than 10th grade boys would suspect. And she had a few obscure points about the boys, as well. “Love of learning is the guide of life” -PBK motto. Never more true than in sex ed. It was a golden era. The pill was common, diseases were not, and the British Invasion was peaking. Getting old is hell!

        3. avatar CA.Ben says:

          That was not my experience. I remember learning more about STDs than actual sex during sex ed.

        4. avatar Hannibal says:

          I’m pretty sure teenagers don’t need sex-ed to figure out how to screw.

        5. avatar Rich Grise says:

          “I’m pretty sure teenagers don’t need sex-ed to figure out how to screw.”

          Maybe not, but it would probably help if someone told them the cause-effect relationship between sex and pregnancy. Telling them “Don’t Do It Because I Said So” seems to work as well as telling them “Don’t Drink and Drive Because I Said So.”

      2. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

        Some interesting ideas there.

    3. avatar FoRealz? says:

      Absolutely. The more federally mandated and funded programs that there are in our local schools, the better off them children will be.


  5. avatar Petition For Redress says:

    He so right ON base….it’s a passively-construed ND story, and when gun ownership is restricted, people have no idea what they’re handling and how to handle it safely. All that is accurate….but doesn’t negate feeling sorry for such an unfortunate event.

  6. avatar PeterK says:

    I could imagine any number of guns that could go off if grabbed wrong, as catching things from socks goes.

    Like any NAA revolver… Just sayin…

  7. avatar ropingdown says:

    Perhaps I should try to moderate my misanthropy. Am I the only one that reads a “gun falls and accidentally shoots X in the head/chest/liver” and thinks “he shot her.” It is like a reflex. And I’m no better when I read “man cleaning his gun at 2 a.m. accidentally shoots self/friend/kid in the head/chest.”

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      No, you’re not the only one. In fact, in this case it’s clear that he shot her, but it does appear that it could have been accidental.

      1. avatar ropingdown says:

        Good catch. “Am I the only one who reflexively thinks ‘he shot her on purpose?’ “

        1. avatar scoutino says:

          No you’re not.

  8. avatar ChrisCicc says:

    I almost submitted this to you with the caption “would this have happened if the person was accustomed to handling firearms?” Something about knowing to keep fingers away from triggers…

  9. avatar Alan Longnecker says:

    Come on guys. How was she to know it was a gun in the sock? She might have thought it was a couple of rolls of pennies or something.

    1. avatar Kevin says:

      +1 This.

      It’s a lot harder to apply the four rules when you don’t know you’re holding a pistol, even if you do know them. RF is way off the rails on this one.

      1. avatar Hannibal says:

        Only if you believe the story the shooter (er… accidental handler?) gave. It sounds a bit contrived to me, like something someone would make up on the fly to try and explain why they just shot someone. You know, like thinking a burglar was locked in their bathroom.

        Doesn’t mean it’s false, but I’d start by looking at the gun and its method of action to see if it’s even plausible.

        1. avatar virgilc says:

          Did anyone take a gun power residue sample from eather one of the two people’s hands to see who was holding the gun at the time of discharge?

  10. avatar Ralph says:

    Sad for Carmen, being accidentally shot by her co-worker.

  11. avatar former water walker says:

    I’ve been an antique dealer for 20years. I’ve cut myself,had nails puncture me,inhaled toxic fumes,etc. And I’m careful. I’ve found many live bullets.(3 .22’s last week). My point being YES a poor minimum wage worker may not be so careful. And who says they’re not familiar with guns? Millions of illegal guns floating around the City. WAY OFF BASE.

    1. avatar Gene says:

      3. 22 LRs is called a retirement plan. You “got bank!”

    2. avatar darrellp says:

      how much do you want for those 3 .22 bullets?

    3. avatar neiowa says:

      What exactly does an “Illegal Gun” look like?

      I’ll grant you that in Chicago at least 20% of the population on the loose should be permanently (back) in prison (or deported to their land of origin).

  12. avatar WAJJr says:

    Ms. Dominguez ‘s co worker pulled the trigger… the gun is a machine. It made it to the store in a sock without firing.. once the co-worker had it in his hands he pulled the trigger most likely by accident but the gun did its mechanical best to work… guns do not “go off” they need to be animated by a human…..

    1. avatar ropingdown says:

      Two possibilities. One is that he found the donated gun with sock holster, assumed it was unloaded, and thought it would be amusing to point it at Carmen and pull the trigger, thinking that not even the most generous benefactor would simply, in today’s environment, give away any .22LR cartridges with the gun.

      The other possibility is that the sock happens to fit him perfectly.

  13. avatar Dave s says:

    socks are the home of saturday night specials, there are some POS handguns out there. I can see an AD possible here.

    1. avatar Gene says:

      Read an article suggesting an attempt to catch is what set it off – finger hitting the trigger as it fell.

      PSA: Do not catch a falling gun.

  14. avatar Nigil says:

    This is clearly fiction. 22 caliber rounds out of a pocket gun don’t kill people, they just make them angry.

  15. avatar former water walker says:

    The .22’s are very old. Possibly 100yrs old. And the vast majority of Mexicans I know call themselves “Mexican” even if they’ve been here 30 years. Legal or not. Deal with it. Life in Chicagoland.

  16. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    One more for the mythbusters & while they’re at it they can do one about the Chicago machine careing about its citizens.

  17. avatar Don says:

    The kind of gun you’d find in a sock in a thrift store, could indeed be a piece of junk from the 60s or 70s and not be drop safe.

  18. avatar Don says:

    I think I heard about this thrift store incident. The guy was trying to pop some tags. He had 20 dollars in his pocket and was hunting, looking for a come up.

  19. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    Obviously the gun went out of control. It sat in a smelly old sock & it shot the first person it saw when it was freed. Those guns are really dangerous, you need to keep an eye on them all the time.

  20. avatar joe says:

    .22 derringer with no trigger guard and a ‘light’ trigger. Caught as it came out of the sock and the person doing the catching inadvertently pulled the trigger. Tragedy all the way around.

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