Hinckley father charged with manslaughter, negligent firearm storage after 3-year-old’s death

Formal charges have been filed in the death of a 3-year-old boy who died from a gunshot wound to his head.

Roy Dean Pauza-Moore, 26, is charged with two counts of second-degree manslaughter, child endangerment by firearm access and negligent storage of a firearm.

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Court records state Pine County deputies responded to a home in the 500 block of First Street Southwest in Hinckley just after 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 8.

Pauza-Moore met the first deputy in the driveway of the home and led him to an upstairs bedroom.

The criminal complaint states Moore’s roommate was tending to the child on the bed before telling the deputy “He’s gone.”

Court records show the boy was pronounced dead at 9:26 p.m. The Medical Examiner’s Office determined he died from the gunshot.

Investigators say they found a full-size black SIG 9mm pistol on an open shelf on top of a gun cabinet on the bedroom wall. They add Pauza-Moore admitted to leaving the loaded and unlocked gun in the same room as his child while he was on a separate floor of the home playing video games.

Pauza-Moore told police the boy was watching movies on his phone when the battery started dying, saying he told his son to go into the bedroom to charge it so he would keep watching videos before bedtime.

Pauza-Moore later said that he and his roommate then went to eat, and when they heard a loud noise, ran upstairs and found the boy bleeding next to the bed. The gun was found on the floor next to the child.

The complaint goes on to say that Pauza-Moore told investigators he kept his handgun in an unenclosed, unsecured area in the gun safe and that the safe was knocked over when he and his roommate entered the bedroom. The boy apparently has knocked over the gun safe in the past, according to the document.

Further investigation found other unlocked guns in the home that were accessible to the child in the home, including a loaded 12-gauge shotgun.

Law enforcement agents say they saw alcohol bottles and beer cans in the kitchen and living room when they entered the home. Investigators also observed the counters and floors were dirty and there were several holes in the sheetrock of the home. There was also a desktop computer in the living room “with some type of game in progress on the screen” according to the complaint.

Days after the shooting, the mother of the child spoke to law enforcement. She said she moved out of the home in June after she and Pauza-Moore decided to separate. She said she had previously told him that the guns needed to be locked and out of reach of children because he often left the handgun on a desk in the living room.

The mother added there was a gun safe in the home but that she never saw Pauza-Moore use it while living with him, despite keeping the gun loaded.

His next court appearance is set for Nov. 7.