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Police: Gun-toting toddler found during traffic stop

Published: Monday, June 4, 2012 1:52 p.m. CST

(MCT) — Guns are sometimes recovered during traffic stops but officers got a surprise this week when a 3-year-old girl was found holding a gun in the back seat of a car in the East Garfield Park neighborhood.

After ordering a passenger to step out of a car, an officer noticed the girl in the back seat holding a 9mm handgun, police said. As the officer tried to take the gun away, the girl threw it on the floor but the gun did not discharge, police said.

The driver, Queshawn King, 19, of the 3300 block of West Monroe Street, was charged with felony unlawful use of a weapon for having a loaded weapon inside the vehicle, misdemeanor endangering the life and health of a child, and misdemeanor possession of a firearm without a valid FOID card, police said.

King was one of six people inside a car that police stopped in the 3800 block of West Gladys Avenue Wednesday night because they saw two children inside who were not in car seats or wearing seatbelts, according to a police report.

As a police officer walked toward the car, the officer saw King in the rear passenger seat making “furtive’’ downward movements toward the 3-year-old next to him, police said.

The officer asked “extremely nervous’’ to step out of the car, according to the report. He was breathing heavily, stuttering and his hands were shaking.

The officer heard King yell, “Fatty, Fatty, Fatty” -- the 3-year-old’s nickname -- several times.

A police sergeant approaching front passenger side of the car then saw the toddler holding the handgun, the report said.

When the sergeant tried to recover it from the child, she threw the loaded 9 mm to the floor, according to the report.

The gun was loaded with eight rounds but did not discharge, police said.

The other occupants of the car -- a man who was behind the wheel, and the 3-year-old’s mother and grandmother -- told police the gun did not belong to them.

King was booked into Cook County Jail Thursday after a judge set his bail at $50,000, according to the Cook County sheriff’s office. He is expected to appear in court on Wednesday for a preliminary hearing.

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