Infant nearly struck by stray bullet unintentionally fired in Frederick

An infant was almost struck by a bullet Tuesday after police say a man unintentionally discharged his firearm inside his Frederick apartment.  

The shooting was initially reported as a building explosion, however, when officers from the Frederick City Police Department arrived at the apartment complex in the 1400 block of Key Parkway they learned that a gun had discharged. 

An investigation later determined that a man — who police have identified as Paul Viera, 25 — unintentionally discharged a firearm in his unit sending a bullet through the floor and just past an infant living in the apartment below. 

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Police say they found a firearm and body armor in plain view and obtained a search warrant for the home. 

"It cannot be overstated the importance of the word ‘responsible’ when it comes to responsible gun ownership," said Jason Lando, chief of Frederick City police. "Yesterday afternoon came dangerously close to ending in tragedy when a stray bullet came within inches of an infant. If you own or handle firearms, please be responsible, treat every gun as though it is loaded, and take the time to go through firearm safety courses before you bring a gun into your home." 

Since the bullet nearly struck the infant, Viera was charged with reckless endangerment and discharging a firearm within city limits.