Parents of girl who was shot: ‘God directed that bullet’

11-year-old struck in shoulder by bullet apparently fired during target practice

A September 2016 courtesy photo of Morgan Kuiper.


JAMESTOWN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — An 11-year-old girl who was accidentally shot near Hudsonville over the weekend returned home from the hospital on Monday.

Her parents told 24 Hour News 8 that Morgan Kuiper is recovering from a bullet that pierced her left shoulder. They say the ordeal was their worst nightmare.

“She’s got some 4-H animals and, you know, very outdoorsy type, active girl that way,” Hib Kuiper described his daughter.

Morgan, who is the oldest of five, often spends time jumping or reading on the trampoline at the family’s Jamestown Township home. That’s where she was on Saturday evening — but the relaxing evening quickly changed.

Morgan Kuiper, Jamestown Township, accidental shooting
11-year-old Morgan Kuiper was jumping on this trampoline at a Jamestown Township home when she was accidentally shot. (April 16, 2017)

“All of a sudden we heard this panicked scream,” Missy Kuiper, Morgan’s mother, recalled.

She and her husband hurried to see what was wrong.

“She ran up the steps,” Missy Kuiper said. “…She just said, ‘My arm is numb, my arm is numb, I can’t feel my arm.’ And she was bleeding a little bit in the shoulder. Not a ton. We didn’t know what to think what it was until she had said, ‘I had heard some gunshots.'”

Morgan’s parents rushed her to the hospital. The next day, doctors performed surgery to remove the bullet from her shoulder.

“It was something that will never happen again and we believe that God directed that bullet to go to her but into the right spot that nothing was damaging,” Missy Kuiper said.

Authorities think the bullet was fired by some people shooting target practice — it’s unclear from what range and which direction.

Neighbors told 24 Hour News 8 on Sunday that it’s not uncommon to hear gunshots from target practice, but that it was much more rapid than usual around the time Morgan was injured.

The Kuipers are just thankful their daughter is back home safe.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office says it has located three people who were shooting in the area. The case is being forwarded to the prosecutor’s office, which will decide if any charges should be filed.

Jamestown Township officials say there is no ordinance prohibiting shooting on private property.