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Dark moment in Lancaster County history leads to charges against father who accidentally shot young daughter

Updated: Monday, January 6 2014, 06:49 PM CST
Posted by Nate Wardle

LANCASTER -- A Lancaster County father is facing charges for the shooting death of his two-month-old daughter.
 
It happened on Christmas Eve in East Lampeter Township.

This is just a tragic story all the way around. The Lancaster County District Attorney says G. Scott Davis never meant to kill his baby, but despite the father’s grief, he still needs to be held criminally accountable.

“Hearts go out to him, we sympathize with them, but ultimately this is unbelievably irresponsible and it's criminal,” stated DA Craig Stedman. “He's got to be held criminally accountable for what he did.”

Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman says the investigation into the shooting death of two-month-old Kestyn Davis found nothing but horrible circumstances, a grieving family, and irresponsible gun handling.

“Without question what we got from every single person was he loves his daughter, he adored his daughter and wanted to be a father,” Stedman explained.

On Christmas Eve, Scott was home alone with his daughter off Old Philadelphia Pike in East Lampeter Township.  The baby was in a glider twelve feet from her father, who was playing with a gun he had just gotten that month.

“The way he demonstrated it, the couch faces the glider,” explains Stedman. “He says he picked it up and as he's sitting down he sets it on his thigh and pulls the trigger. It was obviously pointed in Kestyn’s direction.”

Stedman says Davis was unaware there was a bullet in the chamber.  When it fired, it hit the baby, who Stedman says had no chance to survive.

In the next moments, Davis' wife and father-in-law came home. They had been picking up tuxedos for the couple’s public wedding celebration that weekend.
    
Davis' attorney says his client will plead guilty to involuntary manslaughter.

“The depth of his despair is unfathomable, he has begged God to turn back hands of time to prevent this tragedy but hands of time do not move backward,” Stedman stated.

Stedman classifies the gun as an advanced weapon, meant for police or experienced shooters.
       
Davis had only fired a handgun twice in his life.

“I think we can take one of the darker moments in Lancaster County history and hold someone criminally accountable but also try to prevent another situation like this,” Stedman concluded.Dark moment in Lancaster County history leads to charges against father who accidentally shot young daughter


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