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Tragedy has struck a family after a weekend of recreational shooting in a desert area south of Las Vegas.

According to authorities, a four-year old girl died from injuries sustained while family members were practicing target shooting just off Interstate 15 near the Clark County town of Sloan. The girl has been identified as Dayla Pizzoferrato, and relatives say that she fell off the tailgate of a pickup truck while everyone had turned their backs.

The Clark County Coroner’s Office found metal fragments in the head of the girl that are believed to be from a bullet. Police speculate that a bullet may have ricocheted off of a rock or other hard surface before striking Dayla. She was rushed to University Medical Center in critical condition, but later died from her injuries.

Thus far, Las Vegas Metro police have yet to file any criminal charges in the girl’s death and are investigating the incident as a shooting accident. However, they have notified Child Protective Services which will look into whether neglect or abuse occurred. The area where the tragedy occurred is a common site for target shooters.

I mention this story not to wade into the battle over gun control, but to highlight the potential dangers of target shooting. It’s not enough to make sure that people are out of the direct line of fire. Shooters must make sure that they are firing into a soft surface instead of an area of rocks that is only covered by an inch or two of sand. One gun seller says that bullets can ricochet up to 40 feet after striking their initial target.

Even if it is unintentional, you are still liable for damages in a personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death lawsuit if a bullet from your gun ricochets and strikes another person. So be sure and take the correct precautions before target shooting in the Clark County desert.