The wife of a Wilson County Sheriff's Office deputy was shot to
death Saturday at their Lebanon home by a 4-year-old who gained access
to a gun at a family cookout, police said.
Josephine G. Fanning,
48, was pronounced dead at the home at 6710 S.E. Tater Peeler Road,
according to the Wilson County Sheriff's Office.
occurred while Wilson County Deputy Daniel Fanning, 51, was with another
relative looking at guns in a bedroom of the home, according to the
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
The 4-year-old and Josephine
Fanning walked into the bedroom where a loaded weapon was on top of the
bed, TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm said. The child picked up the gun and
fired one round, which killed Josephine Fanning.
Alcohol was present at the gathering, Helm said. Daniel Fanning was not on duty at the time of the shooting.
gun fired by the 4-year-old was Fanning's personal weapon and not a
police gun, Helm said. The 4-year-old was a relative of Daniel and
Josephine Fanning, police said.
The TBI will continue
investigating and turn over its findings to the district attorney's
office, Helm said. Charges aren't pending.
"(It) appears accidental at this time,'' Helm said.
Fanning was hired by former longtime Wilson County Sheriff Terry Ashe,
who resigned last year to become executive director of the Tennessee
"He was a good officer who did his job,'' Ashe said.