Charges filed against Dinosaur man in accidental shooting

Terry Billings faces charges stemming from leaving handgun accessible

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Terry Billings

A 63-year-old Dinosaur man turned himself in Thursday morning at the Moffat County Jail in connection to an accidental shooting earlier this month in the town 90 miles west of Craig.

A warrant was issued Wednesday for Terry Warren Billings, the grandfather and guardian of a 4-year-old boy and 2-year-old girl.

On Oct. 4, the boy allegedly shot the girl in the arm with Billings’ handgun, according to authorities.

The bullet went through the right side of her torso, along her ribs, and exited through her lower torso. It did not hit any of her bones or organs, authorities said.

Billings was arrested on suspicion of child abuse, a Class 4 felony, and reckless endangerment, a misdemeanor. Those same formal charges have been filed against him in Moffat County Court.

Jeremy Ashton, an investigator with the Moffat County Sheriff’s Office, said the charges against Billings stem from him allegedly leaving the firearm, a .357 handgun, in an area accessible to children.

The firearm, which is registered to Billings, was left in his bedroom, Ashton said.

“I don’t believe it was anything malicious,” the investigator said. “(He) was just not thinking it through, that the child may have access to it.”

As of Thursday afternoon, Billings remained in custody at the jail.

The 2-year-old girl was taken to Rangely District Hospital and then to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction.

Ashton said she has been released from care.

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