Anthony Senatore, father of N.J. 4-year-old who shot and killed playmate, is indicted
(CBS/AP) MAYS LANDING, N.J. - The father of a 4-year-old New Jersey boy who fatally shot his 6-year-old playmate earlier this year was indicted Wednesday on six counts of child endangerment. An Ocean County grand jury returned the indictment Wednesday against Anthony Senatore, 33, of Toms River.
Authorities say Senatore had multiple unsecured weapons in his home. They say his 4-year-old son got a .22 caliber rifle and fired a single shot that struck his 6-year-old neighbor, Brandon Holt, in the head on April 8. He died the next day.
Senatore was arrested several weeks after the shooting, following a lengthy investigation, and was later freed on $100,000 bail. His lawyer, Robert Ebberup, did not return a call seeking comment late Wednesday afternoon.
Although the shooting occurred in Ocean County, Atlantic County is handling the matter because Senatore has relatives who have worked in law enforcement in Ocean County.
Senatore faces five counts of second-degree child endangerment - one for each of the five unsecured firearms investigators say they found accessible to his children, ages 12, 8 and 4. He was also charged with a third-degree count of child endangerment for keeping the loaded .22 caliber rifle unsecured in a bedroom where his 4-year-old son was able to access and fire the weapon at Holt.
Senatore also faces a disorderly person offense for enabling access by minors to a loaded weapon.
Authorities say that besides the rifle used to fire the fatal shot, two 12-gauge shotguns and two other shotguns were all found unsecured, in close proximity to ammunition and accessible to Senatore's children.
New Jersey gun owners are required by law to properly secure weapons if they know children could have access to them. Firearms can be secured by using a container box or a trigger lock.