9-Year-Old Firing Uzi Accidently Kills Firing Range Instructor

PhilHaney by PhilHaney on Aug. 27, 2014

If you have ever been to Las Vegas, you’ll know that there are billboards right in the airport with buxom, scantily clad women holding guns and telling you to come “fire a real machine gun.” It’s all supposed to be great fun for bachelor parties, families, and gun enthusiasts.

However, one family outing to the Burgers and Bullets shooting range south of Las Vegas in White Hills, Arizona, ended in tragedy when a 9-year-old girl accidentally killed her instructor while learning to fire an Uzi. Video of the incident was released by the police and shows the girl and instructor Charles Vacca just moments before she loses control of the weapon, striking the 39-year-old military veteran in the head. Vacca later died after being airlifted to the hospital.

The girl was visiting Burgers and Bullets with her parents; while you must be 18 to carry a firearm in Arizona, children can fire a weapon if accompanied by a parent, or licensed instructor on private property. While she had been shooting single shots, Vacca can be heard telling her to go “full auto.” No charges will be filed in the incident, which is being treated by authorizes as a workplace industrial accident.

Instructors typically stand next to people firing a weapon in order to push the weapon in the correct direction. Some people however have questioned giving the young learner a full clip.  

"Teaching people machine gun 101, even with adults, even with people going through military training, the first few times they shoot machine guns you don't have them shoot a full freaking clip," Steven Howard, a gun expert from American Firearms & Munitions Consulting, told CNN. "The thing begins to fire and it begins to jump and buck all over the place. Your first human instinct is for your hands to clamp down, and you clamp down on the trigger and if the thing has a 32-round magazine ... it starts spraying all over and people get killed."

What are your thoughts on this? Should A 9-year-old be allowed to fire a sub-machine gun such as the one used in this tragedy?

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Jd-Gillenwalters-291 User

Instructor made several errors in judgment and cost him his life. Gun range should consider mounting a camera somewhwere to record the shooter from the front and send it to customer if need be. Trying to stand out of the cameras way could have been the decision that got him..

mascoma User

It is totally the instructors error and he paid the ultimate cost for that.  I pray for the families left to deal with the aftermath.

Jason-Donovan-375 User

While it sucks the little girl accidentally killed someone, I've fired full autos before and they are all hard to keep control of for an adult so why would you allow a kid with a lot weaker muscle mass to try? 

Listen, let her fire semi auto and all but leave the full auto to adults who can hold onto it a little better. 

FaxBook User

"Should A 9-year-old be allowed to fire a sub-machine gun such as the one used in this tragedy?" is one of the funniest things I've ever read.

swedens User

wtf, dont post the half edited movie. we wanna see the rest of it

Drako-Marley-775 User

who ever thought it would be a good idea to let a little girl play with a fully auto smg has been watching to many pedo animes. atleast now he knows the difference between gunsilnger girls and real life... oh wait no he doesnt he dead

usgrant User

The buck stops here ... instructor's fault.  Too bad for the kid.  Im sure the parents believed it would be safe - a guaranty by the instructor - who failed.  Im also confident the instructor would have rather taken a bullet vs. have a student die.  I hunt and shoot and take my kids shooting - f. u. it's none of your business. 

typfive User

Guns should be taken more seriously i can agree with that. Any parent allowing a child to handle a weapon like that does not have a healthy respect for guns.

Gloria-Grace-796 User

Check out this article on the funeral of Mike Brown who was killed in a pretty similar way. Very saddening.

Llnkn0wn User

When someone invents a long range automatic stun gun, that's when America should get rid of their guns. You don't need to kill a home intruder or a robber.

tuckcp53 User

We gotta get more guns up in here.

bitboy0 User

The US-people have a strange thinking about that. 

Facts are:

- weapon are made for killing. Even if you have one only as a deterrent.

- it is not nessecary to give a fully automated weapon to a child.

- countries where people normally don't have guns do have far less accidents with guns

Its allways an escalation between the bad guys and the good ones. If the good ones have guns, the bad ones get bigger guns. So if the good guys also get bigger guns the bad ones use fully-automated ones ... and so on.

The right for self defence is not a guaranty allways to kill only the bad guys ... and it opens the possibility for accidents and rage-killing.

So just be carefull! If you think that it's a good thing to give a weapon to a child, just calculate the risk for such an accident!


#tragiccc foolish; yet preventable. .

typfive User

This is a tragedy and I feel sorry for everyone involved with this incident. But we really need to get out of the habit of asking our government to add laws. We are already very over governed due to us turning a blind eye for years. We should all learn from this and do our part and try to make our own intelligent responsible decisions. Instead we look to the government every time something bad happens and ask them to make everything better. Well they are our government... they govern and that's all they can do. If we continue to ask them to make our decisions because we don't want to take responsibility as adults to make our own. Then they are no longer a governing body, they become a body of dictators.

If you are really hate guns that bad or that afraid of them then don't own one. just simply stay away from them. That's all you need to do. If anything else happens in your life good or bad involving guns will be out of your hands anyway.

LawnBuffalo User

There seems to be a weird gun culture in the States.  Canada has the same right to bear arms, and we don't seem to have the same obsession with guns, except maybe for hunting. We even have open carry (no concealed though) for non-restricted weapons.

The difference up here is that we don't feel like we need to protect ourselves with guns when walking down the street I guess, but it's a circle... you protect yourself with a gun because the next guy has a gun.

typfive User

I agree with exactly what the law permits. A 9 year old child is not mature and wont understand the seriousness of handling a firearm. It is up to that child's parents or guardian to make such rational and important decisions for them until they are of a legal age to do so. Unfortionately not every parent or guardian is smarter than their child and occasionally bad things happen to people because of bad decisions like this. But our government tries its best to let us make our own decisions rather than dictate our every choice. 

As for the big gun debate. I wish it would end. Guns are dangerous but a lot of things are dangerous. It is a weapon it is always going to be dangerous. However it is our right to posses one. It would be a very foolish mistake to give up any of our rights. As strong as the US government is, guaranteed we would never gain that right back. Why hasn't China invaded The US yet? Because every American civilian potentially has a gun. That is a very intimidating factor to our enemies. We are widely hated as a country. Trust me when i say someone would definitely invade us if they felt they could. So don't worry about gun death statistics and the media that blows these controversial topics out of proportion just so their ratings can go up. Ratings means money and sadly in a country of capitalism money means more than freedom, rights, everything.  Be smarter than the media... appreciate your still free, make more than fifty cents a day,  and speak english.

madmiles User


Hamburg1ar User

Why are we letting a nine year old girl touch an uzi? WTF people

DreDaze User

poor girl has to live with this shit for the rest of her life, because her parents are idiots.

Etwidomaylo User

No, a 9 year old girl should not be allowed to handle a full auto Uzi with the extremely limited exposure she was given.  The instructor was at fault here and it is sad that he had to pay for that mistake with his life.  It is even more sad that this child will have to emotionally and psychotically deal with this tragic event for the rest of her life.

grandiloquent User

"England, where no one has guns: 14 deaths. United States...23,000 deaths from handguns. But--there's no connection... and you'd be a fool and a communist to make one" ~Bill Hicks

Denelor User

I just don't seem to see conservatives saying "he was doing "whatever" he deserved to die!  What is it with such an alarming number of liberals saying that this man who was just doing his job, deserved to die for it?  

LawnBuffalo User

@swedens There are websites out there for those who want to see dead people or people dying. Rotten.com. I looked at it once when I was a teenager, it was really, REALLY disturbing, so view at your own risk.

As for me I'm happy not seeing someone get shot and killed.

James-P-748 User

@Llnkn0wn You are a complete idiot! I don't agree with allowing a 9yo handle a full auto weapon (having a 9yo daughter myself) but long range stun guns??? I bet you will rethink your opinion on not killing an intruder if it ever happens to you.

leakyseptic User

@Llnkn0wn ...Yeah....I guess you know their intent as they come into your home with the lights out and your kids in another room. Sure, I'd use a machete but it seems guns and dogs are better theft deterrents than a Cuisinart set or a stun gun.

LawnBuffalo User

@typfive It's not the people that don't want to own a gun that are the problem when it comes to guns. Maybe it's time to actually figure out how to fix the problem, or remove it altogether rather than rationalizing.

jackburton420 User

@LawnBuffalo It the crazy white separatists who want a showdown with the government so they can institute their religious moral laws on everyone else

Nord20 User

@typfive What about a tank?  Is it my right to drive down the street in a fully armed tank?  If not, why not?  It's same rationale as saying you have a 'right' to own a gun.  And it's not a right - it's a privilege.  Nothing that can be taken away from you is a right.

DreDaze User

@typfive china hasn't invaded the US because we buy all the shit they make.

Denelor User

Because the difference being observed is between the two.  I would think that is kind of obvious.

AJ-Price-891 User

@Denelor, yeah, what BlankTitanic said... you must be a blind racist kitten hating gun toting redneck beer guzzling Hispanic hating misogynistic moron.  Or whatever it is that liberals use to reply to normal statements.

Llnkn0wn User

@James-P-748 @Llnkn0wn I never said anything about letting children use guns or weapons of sorts. If it were to me it should be restricted to the age when you can take your driver license.

If I had to I would prefer a stun gun if it had an ammo clip like on a gun.

typfive User

@LawnBuffalo concern for people and their safety is great but i feel removing any right from the constitution is a bad move. This and several other gun incidents or simply put a sad tragedy  it doesn't make sense to take away our 1st amendment over these deaths because many americans died for the constitution. The constitution is greater than that and is the fabric of who we are. Life will never be perfect.

Denelor User

Actually yes, you can drive a fully armed tank.  It will need to be properly registered as a destructive device and the tracks will need to be rubberized so that they do not tear up the street but if procedure is followed then you can.  Driving anything on the road however isn't a right and that seems to be where people become confused.  Driving is a privilege.  Firearms are a right.  I couldn't care less about people's wacky reasons they think we're safe from China but at least understand facts.

Emilia-Kaczorkiewicz-Westhof-693 User

@sliick1081 @grandiloquent what does death rate have to do with anything, that just means general populationgrowth is slowing down and there are more old people then young dumbass

UK had 54 kills with a gun in 2003 US 11040 kills with a gun

LawnBuffalo User

@typfive It's your second amendment, and if you define yourself by your right to bear arms, then America fits its stereotype.

We have the same rights, and Canada isn't known for being obsessed with guns.

Crx-Craig-561 User

@grandiloquent wow yea I lived in japan for 3 years best place in the world i think personally, I will be going back as soon as Im done with my classes at SCTI. I lived 23 miles from shinjuku ( thats the biggest of the 16 downtown areas of Tokyo btw) in Fussa just of the air base

moloboe User

@grandiloquent @sliick1081 Yes, lets now shift focus on Japan.. cause it has been made apparent to you that England isn't as great as you though. You fail, good day.  ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

Victor-Coleiro-617 User

@DumbDuck @sliick1081 @grandiloquent

The problem with that comparison is that the UK has a vastly different definition to what constitutes a violent crime than what the US uses.  The UK includes a whole bunch of things the US doesn't.  Your effectively comparing Apples and Oranges.

The Homicide rate for both countries has an equal definition and is the most pertinent .  In 2010, the US had an average murder rate of 4.8 murders per 100,000 people–4 times higher than the UK’s rate of 1.2 per 100,000

madmiles User

@LawnBuffalo Our media is obsessed with guns not the people. I love going to the range and would like to go hunting one day. Does that make me obsessed? No. It is a hobby. I don't want to go running up and down the street armed to the teeth(even if it was legal which it is not). Your stereotypical view is offensive and uneducated. 

LawnBuffalo User

@madmiles @LawnBuffalo Clearly you're not defining yourself by your right to bear arms, so it wouldn't apply to you specifically.  There are many Americans that it does apply to, and they're the ones that make the news, internet videos, and images that go around the internet for all to see.

My stereotypical view is what many across the world see you as. Sorry it's offensive, but it's not uneducated. I've been to the States many times and seen enough media to form that opinion. If you don't want the world to see America as boorish, gun toting, entitled people, then either stop caring about other people's opinions, or do something to change it.

Just for the record, most of the Americans I've met over the years have been really nice people, but those aren't the people the world gets to see, unfortunately.