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Iowa man pleads guilty after his gun fatally shot a 4-year-old child in the head

Glock 36

CEDAR RAPIDS – An Iowa man who used marijuana while he illegally possessed a Glock 36, .45 caliber handgun that a 4-year-old child used to fatally shoot himself in the head with pled guilty to charges in federal court.

Daniel Henriksen, 30, from Elgin, Iowa, pled guilty to one count of possessing a firearm while an unlawful user of marijuana.­ In a plea agreement, Henriksen admitted that on June 17, 2016, he possessed a Glock 36, .45 caliber handgun. He also admitted that he was an unlawful user of marijuana at the time he possessed this firearm.

Court records allege that on or about June 17, 2016, law enforcement officers and emergency medical personnel responded to Henriksen’s home in Elgin after receiving a 911 call reporting that a four-year old boy had shot himself in the head. Once at the residence, they located a child suffering from a gunshot wound to his head. The child was transported to Palmer Lutheran Hospital in West Union, Iowa, where he was later pronounced dead.

Court records also allege that during the investigation of the child’s death, investigators determined that Henriksen was the owner of the firearm used in the shooting, which was a Glock 36, .45 caliber handgun. During a search of Henriksen’s residence, officers seized several items of drug paraphernalia, including marijuana smoking devices. Several of these items were analyzed at the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Criminalistics Laboratory and tested positive for marijuana.

Sentencing before Chief United States District Court Judge Leonard T. Strand will be set after a presentence report is prepared. Henriksen remains free on bond previously set pending sentencing. Henriksen faces a possible maximum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, $100 in special assessments, and three years of supervised release following any imprisonment.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lisa C. Williams and was investigated by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office.

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