5, 6-year-old kids find loaded gun at restaurant playground in Northwest Houston, parents say; Hear their warning to others

HOUSTON – A family in The Heights is asking parents to teach their children about gun safety after their two boys found and picked up a loaded handgun at a restaurant playground during dinner Wednesday.

“All of sudden, my youngest whose five walks up holding like a platter with a black thing on it, saying ‘Mommy, Daddy! We found a gun!” said the mom Stephanie Pretorius.

Pretorius said Matthew, 6, and Christian, 5 were on the Live Oak Grill property located at 10444 Hempstead Road when they found the weapon in its holster in a grassy area.

“We put it down, and the chamber fell out, and we realize it does have bullets. Hollow-point bullets to boot,” Pretorius said.

Pretorius said she doesn’t blame the restaurant but is speaking out to remind parents to talk to their children about gun safety.

“Whether you like guns or don’t like guns, it behooves the point you need to talk to your kids about gun safety,” said Pretorius.

KPRC reached out to President and CEO of the Texas Gun Club Jason Short who said they hold free gun safety courses for children in kindergarten.

“We just teach parents to tell their kids that if you see a firearm, don’t touch it, runaway, tell an adult,” Short said.

The incident was reported to restaurant management who said they would investigate the situation.

Pretorius also filed a police report with the Houston Police Department and said she was notified that the weapon her sons found was stolen.


About the Author:

Moriah Ballard joined the KPRC 2 digital team in the fall of 2021. Prior to becoming a digital content producer in Southeast Texas and a Houstonian, Moriah was an award-winning radio host in her hometown of Lorain, Ohio and previously worked as a producer/content creator in Cleveland. Her faith, family, and community are her top passions.