Mother of teen who died at gun range doubts suicide claims

DEERFIELD BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - The family of a teenager who, authorities said, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at a Broward gun range doubts that his death was a suicide.

According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, 14-year-old Vincent Colonna died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at Gun World. He and his father had visited the range together on 1700 S. Powerline Road, Thursday afternoon.

But even though BSO believes his death was a suicide, his mother disagrees.

“I feel bad. I know Vincent wouldn’t do that because he knows how much I loved him and how much this would hurt me,” said Joanna De Colonna, the teen’s mother, “so I know he wouldn’t do something deliberate to hurt his parents or his grandparents.”

Vincent’s family said there were no signs he would take his own life.

“Yesterday, he was just so happy, and he was talking to Dad. He and his father played chess together,” said Joanna. “Vincent was a happy kid. He really was.”

One of his grandmothers said, “I just can’t believe this could happen. How could this happen?”

The 14-year-old lived with his father in Coconut Creek, and they would frequent Gun World together.

“My son-in-law, who was with him, said that he’s doing his thing, shooting as he does many times, and all of a sudden he saw that he was on the floor,” said his other grandmother, “and he doesn’t know what happened — if he shot himself or if the gun went off accidentally.”

His family said that BSO’s findings are based on security video from inside the range.

“I know my son, and I want to see that video. I’m his mom. I would know,” said Joanna. “If something’s bothering Vincent, he would tell me.”

His family said the teen had plans for a chess tournament in a week and a 1980s-themed party the following month. His goal was to be a sports agent.

“He’s always careful. I don’t know what could have happened,” said one of his grandmothers.

One of Colonna’s grandmothers said that one of her own children had died years ago, and that her grandson helped her to cope with her loss. She said Vincent was the best thing that had ever happened to her.

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