A licensed security guard accused of leaving a loaded gun inside a bedroom in a Leimert Park home, where his mother’s 5-year-old foster son fatally shot himself while playing with the weapon, pleaded not guilty Monday to several firearms charges.
Jaylin Burdette, 26, is charged with one count each of criminal storage of a firearm, unlawful storage of a firearm and carrying a loaded firearm in a public place. He could face up to a year in jail and $1,000 in fines if convicted of all three charges, according to the City Attorney’s Office.
Burdette did not appear in court Monday, allowing his lawyer to represent him. After hearing his plea, the court granted a request by city prosecutors to bar Burdette from owning or possessing any weapons while the case is pending. That prohibition is a condition of the defendant remaining out of jail on his own recognizance, according to the City Attorney’s Office.
The court also froze Burdette’s state firearm and baton permits and scheduled a pretrial hearing for Sept. 25.
In the early morning hours of Nov. 14, after celebrating his birthday at his mother’s home the night before, the defendant allegedly found a loaded gun in the alley behind her residence. He placed the firearm in a document container in the closet of the bedroom where his mother’s 5-year-old foster son slept and played, according to prosecutors.
Six days later, the boy fatally wounded himself while playing with the loaded gun and was pronounced dead on arrival at a hospital.
`We allege a tragedy occurred because we allege there was a failure to follow one of the most basic principles of law regarding guns and safety here in California. We allege a gun was not safely stored and that it led to a 5-year-old who shot himself and died,” City Attorney Mike Feuer said when announcing the charges. “It’s a tragedy for everyone involved, and we allege it was an avoidable tragedy.”
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