'Ghost Guns': Firearm Kits Bought Online Fuel Epidemic of Violence
A Glock-style ghost gun at the San Francisco district attorney's office on Nov. 12, 2021. (Kelsey McClellan/The New York Times)CHULA VISTA, Calif. — Max Mendoza’s parents awakened just after dawn to a gunshot and ran from their bedroom to find their 12-year-old son propped against the couch, eyes wide in pain, terror and surprise. “It’s the real one,” Max whispered, clutching his chest, seemingly astounded that a weapon resembling a toy could end his life in an instant. But it did. Investigators in this city just south of San Diego are still trying to determine exactly what happened on that Saturday morning in July — if the seventh grader accidentally shot himself or if a 15-year-old friend discharged it while showing it off.
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