Teen reportedly shoots self dead while taking selfies with gun

Technically Incorrect: A Houston teen is reportedly about to start college when he decides to take some selfies while holding a gun. The consequences were tragic, police say.

Chris Matyszczyk
2 min read

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


The scene outside Deleon Alonso Smith's home on Tuesday.

KPRC-TV screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Deleon Alonso Smith, 19, reportedly had two children and was going to start community college on Wednesday.

On Tuesday afternoon, he went to his room and took some selfies while holding a gun, police told KPRC-TV. The gun accidentally went off and he shot himself through the throat and died, the report said.

His grandmother, Alma Douglas, reportedly told KPRC: "It's a numb feeling. It's still unbelievable. Yesterday was my birthday and he came to wish me happy birthday, and now this kind of news."

A Houston Police Department spokesman offered me this statement: "According to a witness, the victim was handling a gun he believed to be unloaded. The gun then discharged and the victim was struck in the upper body."

This isn't the first reported incident involving a gun and a selfie.

Last year, a 22-year-old Mexican man died after he reportedly posed for a selfie with a gun and it went off.

Earlier this year, reports in Russia suggested that a woman tried to take a selfie with a gun and accidentally shot herself in the head. She survived.

The fascination with guns leads some to pose with them on Facebook and elsewhere, without seemingly even checking whether the guns are loaded. Even police chiefs have been known to pose in gun-toting Facebook selfies.

In Smith's case, his cousin reportedly told police that they'd found the gun earlier in the day.

Updated 10:56 a.m.: With statement from Houston Police Department.