Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Charges Filed Against Man Accused of Shooting Girl Mistaken for Skunk

Skunk. Photo:

An 8-year-old girl was dressed in a black costume with a black hat and a white tassel during a Halloween party at a home in New Sewickley Township, Pa. While two to three dozen guests enjoyed themselves, the girl went to the edge of a hill to hide. Police say the woman hosting the party, Janet Grant, told her son there was a skunk nearby and asked him to shoot it. Thomas Grant, 24, took out his shotgun and fired, while his mother shined a flashlight on the hill. The girl was struck in the head, back, and arm before Grant realized he was shooting his cousin, not a skunk. The girl was brought to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh where she remained in critical condition.

Grant was arraigned Thursday on charges of aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and simple assault. He is out on $10,000 bail and is due to appear in court November 1.

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