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Lohrville man charged in 6-year-old’s shooting

Hearing set for Nov. 13

ROCKWELL CITY — A Calhoun County father has been charged with felony child endangerment, months after his 6-year-old son was fatally shot while handling an unsecured firearm he found in the home.

According to court records, Justin Richard Pope, 28, of Lohrville, has been charged with child endangerment resulting in death, a Class B felony, and making firearms available to a minor, an aggravated misdemeanor.

Calhoun County Sheriff Pat Riley wrote in the criminal complaints that Pope “left firearms easily accessible in areas of his residence where minors reside,” two of which were loaded handguns. On June 16, 6-year-old Alexzander Pope picked up one of the loaded handguns, which fired and struck the child, killing him, the complaint says.

A previous release from the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said that the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call from 500 Maple St. in Lohrville shortly before 7 a.m. that day.

The criminal complaint for the misdemeanor charge notes that the firearms weren’t secured by a trigger lock mechanism or stored in a locked box or container. Riley also noted that “multiple children under the age of 14” resided in the home.

Court records show that Justin Pope was charged on Oct. 19, just over four months after the fatal shooting. He had an initial appearance in Calhoun County Magistrate Court on Oct. 24.

Justin Pope has been released from custody under the supervision of the Department of Correctional Services.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Nov. 13.

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