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4-year-old girl shoots herself with grandmother’s gun while looking in purse for candy

By Mason White 12:50 PM September 24, 2017
Shane Zoller with his daughter
Shane Zoller with his daughter
By: Emily Lewis

(Scroll down for video) A young girl lost her life after shooting herself in the chest.

4-year-old Yanelly “Nelly” Zoller was at her grandparents’ home in Tampa, Florida, when she decided to search for candy.

Nelly took her grandmother’s purse, and searched for candy.

While searching for sweets, she found a gun.

The curious child pulled the trigger and accidentally shot herself.

Nelly died from a single gunshot wound to the chest at the home of her paternal grandparents, Michael and Christie Zoller.

Nelly’s horrified father, 22-year-old Shane Zoller, said that when he arrived to pick his daughter up from his parents’ home, he saw police vehicles with their flashing lights outside.

Police are still investigating the incident, but so far, no charges have been filed as this seems to be a tragic accident.

Shane, who was still in high school when he became a father, said that his parents helped him a lot with Nelly, and she was very close with them.

“She was extremely close to them and would get so excited when she got to stay at her nana’s house,” he said. Shane and the girl’s mother shared custody of the child.

The family has set up a GoFundMe page to help them pay for Nelly’s funeral.

Some people gave money while others posted comments, discouraging people to donate, and they are calling for the grandmother to foot the bill.

Susan Thornton wrote in part: “If you give this family one cent, you’re condoning criminal negligence.

“Please realize having a loaded gun around a child is a conscious choice, and it’s always a bad choice. Yes, Grandma is grieving, but she is directly responsible for this death.

“No excuse for having a loaded handgun around children holds water. Grandma needs to pay for this funeral herself. She killed her granddaughter. No accident about it. She put a lethal weapon in an unsecured place and failed to warn or otherwise supervise the child.”

Julie Oliver wrote: “Why doesn’t the grandma pay for the funeral? She was the one who left a gun where her 4-year-old granddaughter could get to it? That is child negligence. Who leaves a loaded gun in a purse with a 4-year-old that close by or in the house.”

Patrick Grenier said: “the grandmother should be charged with child negligence.”

Shannon Posadas Hughes replied: “At the end of the day, there is a sweet little girl gone and her parents grieving for the rest of their lives for their sweet, precious baby girl.

“Her Grandmother will never be the same. She knows it’s her fault, she lives with that every day I’m sure.

“Accidents happen every single day. They aren’t asking you to come on here and point fingers, they are asking people for help and to care. There are other sites where you can go and share your negativity. May you smile again some day soon thinking of cute funny things she did.”

Tara Terminiello asked: “How did people get buried before GoFundMe sites sprang up?”