Crime

Her 4-year-old shot himself at a Myrtle Beach hotel. Here is the plea deal she rejected.

Heather Odom addresses the court after her son shot himself in Myrtle Beach

The mother of a 4-year-old who shot himself in a Myrtle Beach hotel room addresses the court during a bond hearing. Odom and Jeremy Barrett were charged with unlawful neglect of a child.
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The mother of a 4-year-old who shot himself in a Myrtle Beach hotel room addresses the court during a bond hearing. Odom and Jeremy Barrett were charged with unlawful neglect of a child.

The mother of a 4-year-old who shot himself in the head at a Myrtle Beach oceanfront hotel rejected a plea offer and will head to trial.

Heather Odom was in Horry County court on Monday and told a judge she rejected a plea offer that would have put her behind bars for eight years. Instead, she will face up to 10 years in prison on a child neglect charge.

Odom’s trial is scheduled for August.

The 4-year-old shot himself while in a hotel suite at Oceans One Resort at 107 S. Ocean Blvd in July 2018. Odom and the child’s other parent was in another bedroom in the suite when the child fired the gun. According to an arrest warrant, the loaded .38-caliber gun was in Odom’s purse.

“I just want to say this was just a tragic accident and it’s something that shouldn’t have happened, but it did,” Odom said during her bond hearing nearly a year ago.

The family was from North Carolina and the child went to the hospital after the shooting. In the immediate aftermath, officials said the child was in critical condition but was “holding his own” in care.

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Alex Lang is the True Crime reporter for The Sun News covering the legal system and how crime impacts local residents. He says letting residents know if they are safe is a vital role of a newspaper. Alex has covered crime in Detroit, Iowa, New York City, West Virginia and now Horry County.
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