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Criminal charges may result from teen accidentally shooting himself

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LOGAN COUNTY, OK -- In the blink of an eye, a teenager's mistake leaves him clinging to life. Logan County authorities say a 16-year-old boy put his own rifle in his mouth and pulled the trigger Friday night, not realizing it was loaded.

Jared Ridgway was still in ICU at OU Medical Center Tuesday evening, and according to his mother, he was on a ventilator. Authorities say Ridgway was able to speak when they arrived at the scene, which was at a friend's house, near Waterloo and Post Road.

They say he and his friend both said it was Ridgway who stuck a rifle in his mouth to prove to his friend that it wasn't loaded. His mother, Melynda Shands, told us the gunshot wound resulted in him having a stroke Monday morning and now he has no use of his right arm or leg.

She said doctors told her the bullet may not be removed from her son's head for fear of excessive bleeding.

"Oh he's never going to have another gun," Shands said. "As far as I'm concerned, he doesn't need another one. I don't even want one in my home."

"That family (homeowners) left the scene knowing full well the boys had a firearm and were likely to use it," Logan County Sheriff's Dept. Cpt. Richard Stephens said. "That places (the boys) in undue risk and that's negligence."

For that reason, Stephens said investigators presented child negligence charges to the District Attorney against the owner of the trailer, Kerry Hise. He said formal charges against Hise are pending the outcome of Ridgway's recovery.