Defense attorney hopes Linden man's punishment saves a life

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FLINT (WJRT) (3/4/2019) - "Guns are not a toy," Defense Attorney Matt Norwood said.

He explained his client is going to prison for the next 6 years for forgetting that.

Our cameras were not allowed inside the courtroom at Monday's sentencing hearing, but it was evident 22-year-old Floyd Blalock was just as emotional as when he took a plea deal last month.

"I accidentally shot him. I didn't mean it," Blalock said on February 5th.

Admitting to the Judge he shot and killed his best friend, Christopher Baldwin, at the Argentine Township home in September 2018.

"It was in the shoulder, but because the bullet was a self defense bullet, it shattered on impact; and then, started hitting the vital organs, it caused him to die, to bleed out," Norwood said.

Norwood explained the two were playing a game they played all the time, where they dry fired Baldwin's guns at each other.

"The victim dry fired a .38 revolver at my client. And so, in a joking response, and Chris was like a big brother to Floyd, and sometimes when you have big brothers you mimic your big brother's behavior because you look up to, idolize them. And, there's no doubt that Floyd idolized Chris. So he mimiced the behavior of dry firing guns," Norwood explained.

Norwood said Blalock grabbed the gun from a holster on the refrigerator, took out the clip and pulled the trigger. He didn't know there was a bullet in the chamber.

"From what I've heard about Chris, if he were here today, he'd forgive him. The question is if my client will forgive himself," Norwood said.

Norwood is hopeful this case sparks a conversation not just between parents and their kids, but kids and their friends.

He explained, "They're at a friend's house and they find their dad's gun and they start playing with it. The second your friend pulls out that gun, you should tell him 'Hey you put that away because we could die'. And if they try to say something like 'Oh are you scared or something?' Explain 'Yeah, well guess what happened to this case in Argentine that I knew about.'"

Maybe, Norwood said, a life will be saved.

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