Six children were home when Toronto police officers conducting a search warrant found a handgun inside a child’s crib, cocked back and fully loaded.

Deputy Chief James Ramer tweeted a photo of the .45-calibre handgun on a pink mattress inside the crib, next to a stuffed animal and a pile of clothes. Eight bullets were inside the magazine, with one in the chamber.

“It would take very little contact to set a firearm like that off,” Det. Sgt. Andrew Steinwall told CTV Toronto.

The disturbing discovery was made Wednesday as officers executed a search warrant in Scarborough’s Malvern neighbourhood.

The children inside the home were between the ages of two and 14 and had access to the bedroom where the loaded gun was located, police said. The warrant was part of an investigation into three men believed to be in possession of a gun.

Police say it’s fortunate that no one was harmed.

“We’re dealing with the most vulnerable people in the communities right now – children. And if they have access or if they somehow inadvertently come into contact with a firearm like that, the outcome could be tragic,” Steinwall said.

“I’m a father myself and this touches close to home for me.”

Three men have been arrested in connection with the investigation: Trayvon Palmer, 19, Jordan Marcelle, 25, and Kacey Downer, 22. All three men are from Toronto and face firearms-related charges.

The accused are all set to appear in court sometime next week.