A fatal incident in which a nine-year-old girl accidentally killed her instructor with an Uzi at an Arizona shooting range this week has sparked outrage on social media.

Pundits, talk show hosts and journalists expressed disbelief that a child would be allowed to fire an Uzi, a powerful submachine gun.


The girl, who has not been identified, was on vacation with her family when she accidentally shot 39-year-old Charles Vacca in the head on Monday at the Last Stop shooting range in White Hill, Ariz. He later died after he was airlifted to the University Medical Center in Las Vegas.

Her parents recorded her shooting lesson on a cellphone, capturing the moment when she lost control of the gun after it was set on fully automatic mode. The Mohave County Sheriff’s Office released a portion of the video.

The shooting touched off a debate over age limits at gun ranges. An expert told The New York Times there are no age limits for firing guns in Arizona, and some shooting ranges might be exempt from the federal law that forbids those under 18 from possessing a handgun.

Republican strategist Ana Navarro questioned why children were allowed to engage in such dangerous activities.

Neera Tanden, president of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, made the same point.

The gun control group the Brady Campaign tweeted that it’s “absolutely ridiculous” children can use an Uzi.

A digital strategist documented a tweet the National Rifle Association’s NRA Women account issued following news of the shooting.

Talk show host Montel Williams tweeted that he is a gun owner and is offended a parent or instructor would allow such a young child to shoot an Uzi.

The New Republic posted an article about a mother who was arrested for letting her child visit the park alone, and questioning why the parents of the girl who shot the Uzi were free.

Former CNN host Piers Morgan, a vocal gun control advocate, said the incident should be a wake-up call for the U.S.