New Hampshire

Man Arrested After Child Found Sleeping With a Gun in Deplorable Living Conditions

Manchester police said responding officers found a 5-year-old girl sleeping with a .45 caliber handgun in a holster on her chest in a filthy bed

What to Know

  • Thomas Gulledge, 29, of Manchester has been charged with two counts of reckless conduct in connection with incident.
  • A 5-year-old girl was found sleeping on a filthy bed with a .45 caliber handgun in a holster on her chest.
  • Officers found deplorable living conditions inside Gulledge's apartment, including dog feces, trash and rotten food.

A New Hampshire man has been charged after a 5-year-old girl was found sleeping with a gun and in deplorable living conditions.

Thomas Gulledge, 29, of Manchester was arrested on an electric bench warrant after police said they responded to a report of shots fired outside of an apartment on Flaherty Lane Wednesday night.

Police say they found the little girl sleeping inside the apartment with a loaded gun on top of her.

When police arrived, several witnesses told them the shots may have come from apartment 2S. The resident, Thomas Gulledge, gave officers permission to clear his apartment. That's when police say they found the unit covered in dog feces, trash, chewing tobacco cans and flies. According to reports, officers then found Gulledge's 5-year-old daughter sleeping on a mattress with a gun resting on her chest.

"The firearm had 13 rounds in it with one round in the chamber," prosecutor Patrice Casian told the judge Thursday afternoon. "That little girl could've shot herself or another person."

Jason Paquette lives below Gulledge and says while he's shocked to hear about the gun, the conditions inside the apartment don't surprise him at all.

"It smelled really bad, you could smell it in the hallway and everything," Paquette told NBC10 Boston.

Shauna Erwin's children play with Gulledge's little girl.

"She is such a good girl, so beautiful," she said.

Gulledge's defense attorney told the judge that his client is a single dad who loves his daughter very much.

That's exactly what Erwin thought, until she heard the accusations against him.

"If he loved her enough, he wouldn't have done that," she said. "That's enough to lose my respect."

Prosecutors say the little girl had to be taken to the hospital, where nurses had to scrub dirt and grime from her skin.

She's with a foster family while her dad goes through the court process.

Gulledge has pleaded not guilty and is being held on $10,000 cash bail.

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