A four-year-old brought a loaded handgun onto a school campus in Texas, per The Straits Times.
Just two days earlier, a seven-year-old brought a gun onto a school in Cochise, Arizona.
Giffords Law Center, a nonprofit organization, warned of "how attractive guns are to kids."
A four-year-old from Texas is the second US child in a week to bring a handgun to a school campus, The Straits Times reported, prompting a gun safety group to warn of a "tremendous problem" with child access prevention to guns.
On Wednesday morning, an off-duty police officer was called in for assistance at a school in Corpus Christi, Texas, after being advised that a child there had access to a firearm, police said.
The four-year-old was in possession of a loaded handgun, which the officer later seized, according to police.
The parents of the child were identified as the gun owners, resulting in the arrest of the 30-year-old father. He was charged with making a firearm accessible to children and abandoning or endangering a child. Texas is one of the 24 US states with child access prevention and safe storage laws.
"The Corpus Christi Police Department wants to remind all our citizens to ensure that firearms are safely stored," the police said in a statement.
Just two days earlier, another child was found to have brought a gun onto a school campus.
A seven-year-old had a gun, along with a fully-loaded magazine in their backpack, at a school in Cochise, Arizona, according to the sheriff's office.
The child's father was alerted to find that his two guns were missing. The second weapon was found in the school's administrative offices, The Straits Times reported. The newspaper said the child had hidden it while waiting for officials to arrive.
"The parents were interviewed and advised that the weapons had been placed in what they believed to be a secure location away from the children after a recent camping trip, but it appears that the second grader was able to gain access and take the handguns to school," the sheriff's office said, per The Straits Times.
The Cochise County sheriff's office did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.
'A culture that fails to acknowledge how attractive guns are to kids'
This week's incidents are part of a concerning pattern, said Lindsay Nichols, the federal policy director of Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, in an interview with Insider.
Parents are failing to prevent their children from accessing guns, which can ultimately lead to suicides, school shootings, and unintentional shootings, Nichols said.
4.6 million minors in the US live in homes with at least one loaded, unlocked firearm, according to research from Giffords Law Center, where Nichols works. And more than half of all gun owners store at least one gun unsafely, without any locks or other safe storage measures, the research said.
"This is a tremendous problem," Nichols said. "It's part of a culture that fails to prioritize safety and to acknowledge how attractive guns are to kids and wilfully ignores the risk that firearms pose," Nichols said.
"The thing is the situation is really preventable," she continued. "A gun lock can easily fix any one of these incidents, and that means a gun lock can easily mean the difference between life and death."
Nichols said Giffords Law Center advocates for comprehensive child access prevention and safe storage laws to prevent avoidable deaths.
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