FRI SEP 04, 2015 AT 03:44 PM PDT
'We certainly have a policy that you don't fire a gun in the office.' GunFAIL CXXXVI
60 Comments / 60 New
attribution: The TSA Blog
Five of 48 guns discovered by TSA agents at airports across the country from August 21-27, 2015.
Thirty-six original listings as of "press time," and once again, the bulk of them involve people accidentally shooting themselves. Sixteen of the 36, as a matter of fact. Seven minors were accidentally shot this week, which is a relatively low number. However, four of the seven were shot fatally, and that's an unusually high percentage.
Several other "traditional" categories are represented: a gun left behind in a church bathroom (and found by a 4 year old), a careless neighbor who accidentally fired into the next apartment, trying out a new holster, and of course, cleaning a still-loaded gun.
FAILs of particular note: the Lancaster, Kentucky man accidentally shot during a gun swap at a local gas station; the innocent bystander accidentally shot and killed by police officers during an illegal gun sales bust, and; the title story, which has some context of its own.
Seems that an employee of the County Attorney's Office in Provo, Utah—a licensed concealed carrier—agreed to allow another employee (also a licensed concealed carrier) to examine and handle the weapon while at the office. But guess what? Our specially trained and permitted heroes both violated some of the rules of gun safety, failing to fully inspect and render the weapon safe before handing it over to someone else, and likewise failing to inspect it again upon transfer. But hey, they were just having a little fun between friends, right? What's the harm? Well, in this case, it was a bullet put through the window of the office, exiting to points unknown on the outside.
I mentioned that there was additional context to this story, and part of it is this: we've seen this exact same fact pattern before: again, an admiring colleague in a county prosecutor's office handling a friend's brand-new gun and accidentally firing it through a window. Last time, it was the McLennan Co., Texas prosecutor's office in Waco (listed in GunFAIL XLIII). This time, it was the Utah Co., Utah prosecutor's office in Provo.
Nearly as disturbing, though, is the fact that the Utah County attorney, in announcing the incident to the press, declined to identify the employee who fired the weapon, declined to say whether there would be any disciplinary action taken, and even claims not to remember on what day the incident took place. Oh, and the bullet was never found, but it's probably on the grass outside or something, so whatevs. Not exactly reassuring, coming from a law enforcement official. Unless, of course, you've done the same thing and now face prosecution in that county for it, in which case you could perhaps embarrass the county attorney's office out of pressing charges against you.
The rest of the week's collection appears below the fold.
GNESEN TOWNSHIP, MN, 8/23/15: A 50-year-old man died in an accidental shooting Sunday evening in Gnesen Township north of Duluth, authorities said. The St. Louis County Sheriff's Office reported that deputies were dispatched to a home on Arnold Road at about 6 PM Sunday on a report of an accidental shooting. The man said he had dropped a gun, causing it to discharge. He was struck by a .22-caliber bullet in the lower abdomen. The man was treated by first responders but died from the injury. Foul play is not suspected, authorities said. The name of the victim is being withheld pending notification of family. The incident remains under investigation.
FIELDBROOK, CA, 8/23/15: From a Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office press release: On 08-23-2015 at 10:20 AM Deputies with the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to Davenport Lane Fieldbrook, regarding an alleged self-inflicted gunshot wound to a 43 year old male. When deputies arrived on scene they learned from medical personnel that the victim stated he accidentally shot himself in the abdomen with a small caliber handgun. The victim was associated with a 1987, brown, Mazda pickup truck. Deputies searched the area where the victim told medical staff he had shot himself. Neither deputies nor medical staff was able to locate the firearm. Deputies responded to the local hospital where the victim was transported by ambulance. At the hospital deputies attempted to interview the victim for the exact location where the firearm was located. The victim was uncooperative towards law enforcement on the exact location of the firearm. The victim just said, I know my rights, I’m not saying anything else. The victim had emergency surgery and is currently listed in stable condition. The Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help in this case. If anyone locates a firearm in the Fieldbrook area, please do not touch the firearm, which may be still loaded. The public is advised to contact the Sheriff’s Office immediately if they locate a firearm.
HOLLY RIDGE, NC, 8/23/15: A 4-year-old boy walked into a bathroom stall and found a loaded handgun after a church service in Holly Ridge on Sunday, Holly Ridge Police Chief John Maiorano said. The man, Claude Lee Haynes III, 70, received a ticket for child endangerment. Haynes is accused of leaving an Equinox .380 pistol in a stall after a service of Lifewalk Church in Holly Ridge Community Center at 404 Sound Road. Maiorano said Haynes is a member of the church. “He understood the severity of it,” Maiorano said. “A 4 year old is just nowhere old enough to be within reach of a gun.” The child’s father went into the stall to get the boy away from the weapon, he added. Maiorano said many churches are designating armed members to protect against attacks. “It’s kind of a prevalent thing going on,” he said. Haynes allegedly forgot the weapon at the church, Maiorano added. “He left it in there and left the premises,” he said.
MERIDIAN, MS, 8/23/15: Authorities with the Meridian Police Department responded to a 911 call Sunday evening at Western Gardens, where a person had been shot. According to Detective Dareall Thompson, the victim originally stated two shots were fired from a car, with one hitting him in the right elbow. The victim was transported to a local hospital, where he changed his story telling officers it was an accident, Thompson said. "His story wasn't adding up, and upon further investigation the victim told us his friend had pulled a gun from his waist and it accidentally went off," Thompson said. "We originally thought we were looking for other people, but it wasn't a true story."
HARDY, VA, 8/23/15: A Franklin County preschooler is dead and his father is in jail. Investigators have charged 32-year-old Jeremiah “Jay” Neiderhiser with involuntary manslaughter and felony child abuse and neglect. He is being held without bond. Police aren't saying if this is a tragic accident or malicious. The family of three-year-old Isaiah Neiderhiser made funeral arrangements after the little boy's autopsy. The medical examiner determined a small caliber gunshot wound was Isaiah's cause of death. Police tell me Isaiah was with his dad late Sunday morning at an apartment on Heatherton Lane. That apartment is behind a house where the Isaiah's father's, girlfriend's family lives, according to police. Police say Isaiah's father called 911 and reported the boy unresponsive. Police aren't saying at this point if the boy got the gun or if dad accidentally fired it. "Certainly anything involving a child and you know, that has a gunshot type would. We're going to have to investigate it fully and based on the evidence and our findings we'll come to a conclusion once that's done,” said Captain Paul Caldwell of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. Caldwell says Jay Neiderhiser is cooperating and that there is no indication that he waited to call 911 after the handgun shot hit his son.
NEWPORT NEWS, VA, 8/23/15: A 30-year-old Newport News man was arrested and accused of accidentally firing his gun into a neighboring apartment Sunday, city police said. Police were called to the 300 block of St. Thomas Drive about 7:30 AM. There, they spoke to a resident who said a bullet had been fired through a wall and was found in a bedroom, said Newport News Police Department spokesman Lou Thurston. In the course of the investigation, the officers went to an apartment next door, where the resident, identified as Gabriel Mendoza-Martinez, said he had accidentally discharged his handgun, Thurston said. No injuries were reported in the incident. Police charged Mendoza-Martinez with discharging a firearm into an occupied building, discharging a firearm within the city limits and reckless handling of a firearm, Thurston said. He was placed in the custody of the Newport News City Jail.
SANDY SPRINGS, GA, 8/23/15: 8040 Roswell Road, 30350, 8/23: A 62-year-old man shot himself in the hand while at the Sandy Springs Gun Club and Range. While standing at the firing lane, and assuming the .380 Beretta was not loaded, he began to work on the gun causing it to fire. The bullet passed through the fatty part of the hand, then down range. He is expected to recover fully.
PHOENIX, AZ, 8/24/15: Police say three teenagers were handling a gun Monday morning when it went off, killing one of the teens. Emergency paramedics were called to a home near 67th Avenue and Indian School Road after receiving a report of an "accidental shooting," said Phoenix Officer James Holmes. Holmes said it appears that three men--ages 18, 19 and 19--were handling a handgun when it accidentally discharged. An 18-year-old male was struck and died, he said. The teen's death is considered "suspicious" and is being investigated as a homicide because the teen died by gunfire, said Holmes. The other two males have been detained for questioning, but no arrests have been made. The teen has not been identified pending next-of-kin notification. He did not own the gun or handle it, Holmes said. Police believe the gun did belong to one of the teens, but that still needed to be verified. The homeowner was not home at the time of the shooting but has since returned. Holmes said at least one of the teens was in town visiting. No other details were immediately released.
BUCKEYE, AZ, 8/24/15: Buckeye police are investigating the death of 17-year-old Dannielle Rangel after her family says a rifle fell over and accidentally discharged a bullet, striking Rangel in the head. On Monday around 10:30 PM, Rangel's family says her brother was moving his rifle, a 22 caliber AR-15. He allegedly set the rifle down and it fell over and went off. Rangel was rushed to a nearby hospital, but died the next day. Her uncle, Arthur Velasquez, says the family is devastated to lose a girl who was so full of life. "She was very outspoken; she was always cheerful. She was always polite," Velasquez said. The family also says she had a bright future ahead, looking forward to college and a career in law. "She was getting prepared to take college courses to go into college and she wanted to be a district attorney," Velasquez said. The family is facing a new crisis: how to pay for her funeral. They have set up a gofundme site to help. Police are investigating, but no charges have been brought against her brother.
LANCASTER, KY, 8/24/15: Lancaster Police say that man was shot during an exchange of firearms and now the Commonwealth's Attorney is trying to decide if charges should be filed in the case. It happened around 9 PM Monday at the Shell station on Richmond Road. Two men were there to exchange firearms after meeting on a social media site. Lancaster Police say that Kristopher Wallace was shot in the torso some time during that exchange when one of the guns discharged. The victim's 9-year-old stepdaughter was in the vehicle while the transaction and shooting happened. Wallace is listed in critical condition at UK Hospital.
NORTH COLLEGE HILL, OH, 8/24/15: Police say a suburban Cincinnati teenager has been arrested for the accidental shooting of his 11-year-old brother. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports the teen was charged with having weapons under disability, discharging a weapon at or into a residence, domestic violence and tampering with evidence. Police and emergency crews were called to a home on Goodman Avenue in North College Hill around 5:30 PM Monday in response to a boy suffering from a gunshot wound just above his waist. Police say officers discovered the victim’s older brother accidentally shot him. A 9mm handgun was recovered at the scene. It’s unknown who owned the weapon.
PRIEST RIVER, ID, 8/24/15: Authorities are still attempting to make contact with a man who reportedly suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound Monday night near Priest River. “The case is still under investigation although all indications point towards an accidental discharge,” said Bonner County Sheriff’s Det. Sgt. Gary Johnston. “It wasn’t what we initially thought and the victim suffered only a superficial wound to the foot.” Deputies responded to the residence of Dean Stewart and Shania Chappell on Old Priest River Road and Jachetta Cutoff Road to investigate a weapon offense disturbance around 6 PM. Johnston confirmed that Stewart was the victim of the gunshot although detectives have been unable to contact the man. “He’s less than enthusiastic to come forward due to some prior legal obligations,” Johnston said. “We are still attempting to make contact with him.” A witness reported seeing a man who appeared to have been shot being carried to a Volkswagen, which left the scene toward Newport, Wash., according to court records. Officers from the BCSO and Priest River Police Department combed the area looking for Stewart well into Monday night. The wound didn’t require professional medical attention, according to Johnston. The type of weapon used in the accident is still under investigation. Chappell, 24, was arrested for obstruction for insisting the man who was shot was named Robert. She was further charged with possession of methamphetamine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia after a search of the Jachetta Cutoff home, court records indicate. Meth pipes found inside the home field-tested positive for the stimulant. More than 7 ounces of marijuana was also recovered, a probable cause affidavit said. Chappell made an initial appearance in Bonner County Magistrate Court on Tuesday. Her bail was set at $7,000 and a public defender was appointed to represent her, court documents show.
FERRIDAY, LA, 8/24/15: Two men were hospitalized Monday night after one of them fired a gun and wound up shooting them both. Ferriday police responded to a shots fired call in the 400 block of 10th Street and discovered Julius Bates and Teddy Taylor suffering from gunshot wounds. The men alleged they were shot walking down the street. After further questioning by police, however, Bates reportedly admitted that he was in possession of a gun, and had accidentally discharged it, striking himself in the right leg and Taylor in the left foot. Bates reportedly also admitted to owning a bag of suspected marijuana found at the scene. Taylor was transported by ambulance to a hospital in Alexandria, and Bates was treated locally at Riverland Medical Center. Bates was arrested on a bench warrant following the incident but no other charges had been filed as of Tuesday afternoon.
RINGGOLD, GA, 8/24/15: A 16-year-old boy is dead after detectives say he was shot at his family's home in Catoosa County. Detectives believe the shooting was accidental, although their investigation is in the preliminary stages. The call came in before midnight at a residence on Edgemond Circle. Captain Chris Lyons with the Catoosa County Sheriff's Department said other people were home at the time, including some family members. Lyons said they don't expect to file any charges and that everyone involved is cooperating. The sheriff's department is leading the investigation and the GBI is assisting. UPDATE: Catoosa County Sheriff Gary Sisk tells Channel 3 that an older brother was "mishandling" a firearm when it accidentally discharged, fatally wounding his younger step brother at the Catoosa County home. Sisk confirms to Channel 3 the victim is 16-year-old Hunter Harbin. The weapon was a .38 caliber revolver. Sisk says that charges will no be filed in the incident. "We're seeing and dealing with firearms more and more in society, our young people have access to firearms," Sisk said. "Even though they can be taught gun safety and I feel this family had taught this individual gun safety, sometimes unfortunately our young people use bad judgement and adults can as well. That's what I feel this case was was just bad judgement." Funeral arrangements for Harbin have not been announced.
AUGUSTA, GA, 8/25/15: One student is recovering from a grazed bullet and another student is in custody for accidentally firing the weapon that it came from. It happened at Hornsby Elementary Tuesday morning. The Richmond County Board of Education Police is working in tandem with the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office to investigate. Parents were notified that the incident was believed to be accidental but that they could pick up their children at the school if they wished. The Richmond County School System released the following statement: “At approximately, 10:45 AM, August 25, 2015, it was discovered that a student brought a gun to school against state law and district policy. While playing with the gun inside a desk, a student accidentally discharged the weapon and another student was struck. The parents of involved students have been notified. The student, who brought the weapon to school, is currently in police custody. The injured student was transported to the hospital. All other students and staff are safe and secure in the building.”
EASTON, MA, 8/25/15: First responders were called to a Foundry Street home Tuesday evening after a man allegedly shot himself in the leg at that address. Medical personnel were called to the house just after 7:30 PM after receiving reports that a man inside the home had accidentally shot himself in the knee. The incident is the second accidental shooting to take place in Easton this year. In April, a passenger accidentally shot the driver of his vehicle while the two men were driving down Route 138 coming from Stoughton. MORE: Easton Police Chief Gary Sullivan tells The Enterprise of Brockton the shooting happened Tuesday night. He says the man was "breaking in a new holster" when his pistol fired and shot him in the leg. Sullivan says the man has a license to carry a firearm and won't be charged.
HANLEY HILLS, MO, 8/25/15: St. Louis County police say a 21-month-old boy apparently fatally shot himself with a loaded handgun at a home in Hanley Hills on Tuesday. Police spokesman Sgt. Brian Schellman said shortly after the child died that he had been the victim of a single gunshot wound to the torso. Late Tuesday, the police department issued a statement that said: “After a thorough investigation, detectives believe the victim picked up a loaded handgun and shot himself.” The statement also said an arrest had been made by detectives but that details would not be available until the case was presented to the St. Louis County prosecuting attorney’s office on Wednesday morning. Officers were investigating in the 7700 block of Utica Drive, where they believe the shooting took place. Schellman said someone took the child to St. Mary’s Hospital in Richmond Heights. The person was believed to have been his mother, but that remained unclear. Hospital workers contacted Richmond Heights police about 1 PM to report that the child had been shot. The child’s mother told police he had been shot at the home in Hanley Hills, which is under the jurisdiction of St. Louis County police. The death comes just days after a 9-year-old Ferguson girl was fatally shot while doing homework in her mother’s bed.
WEST CHESTER, PA, 8/25/15: The Chester County District Attorney's office said on Thursday that the shooting of a knife-wielding man by a sheriff's deputy inside the Justice Center was justified. Curtis Smith, 34, died after the shooting on Tuesday. Investigators also said that another deputy, who was injured in the shooting, was accidentally shot in the hand by his fellow deputy during the chaos. In a news release issued Thursday, District Attorney Tom Hogan said that Smith had been with family members earlier in the day and seemed "normal." However, for an unknown reason, Smith sped away from the house in his car. Smith then arrived at the Justice Center, the D.A. said, and entered the front doors at 11:49 AM. He was confronted by two deputies, and Smith allegedly said "Let's do this s---!" That's when he pulled a knife and slashed the first deputy, but the knife was stopped by his bulletproof vest. The second deputy fired three times, hitting Smith twice in the torso. During the gunfire, police say one of the bullets hit the first deputy in the hand. He underwent surgery for his injuries and is in stable condition. Smith was rushed to the hospital and was able to tell authorities his name. He later died.
PERRY, FL, 8/25/15: A City of Perry firefighter was critically injured during an accidental shooting Tuesday afternoon and remains hospitalized at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital (TMH). Josh Sheffield was at home with his 20-month-old son, Jackson, cleaning a gun when it discharged. The bullet struck him in the left upper chest/shoulder area.
GREENEVILLE, TN, 8/25/15: New details on the circumstances behind the Aug. 25 death of a Sunnydale Road man are contained in a sheriff's deputy's report. Kenneth Oval Hensley, 67, died of chest injures suffered after a shotgun he was carrying on his tractor apparently accidentally discharged, Deputy Anthony Pruitt said in a report. Hensley died of chest injures suffered in the shotgun blast, the report said. Deputies were dispatched to 492 Susong Road at Hensley' farm in the Kelly Gap community. On arrival, a man identified as Hensley was seen "slumped over the left side of a tractor that ran into the side of of an outbuilding," the report said. A 12-gauge shotgun was on the ground by the tractor. Deputies learned that Hensley "was coming in from the field on the tractor with the (shotgun)," the report said. Family members told investigators that Hensley always carried the shotgun with him while he was on the farm. "The shotgun dropped from the tractor and accidentally discharged, striking Mr. Hensley in his right side chest area causing death," the report said. After detectives completed their investigation, Pruitt examined the single-shot gun. The barrel contained an empty cartridge. "Further inspection of the gun showed it to have a faulty trigger mechanism that allowed the firing pin to hit the shell primer just by pushing the hammer forward from the reset position," the report said. An autopsy was performed last week. Hensley was found by a relative who arrived to help with farm work. Hensley also carried a hosltered .38-caliber revolver as he worked on the farm, the report said. Funeral services for Hensley were held Saturday.
NORTH BEND, WA, 8/25/15: A North Bend man accused of shooting to death a childhood friend while showing off a pistol he knew had been recalled due to a safety defect has been charged with manslaughter. SeattlePI.com reports that King County prosecutors claim Robert C. Navarro, 50, killed Albert Garza on August 25th at Navarro’s apartment. Navarro had called police just after 10:30 PM to say he'd accidentally shot his longtime friend while Mr. Garza, a father of three, was sitting in a chair. The report says according to charging papers Navarro claimed he was showing Garza his new Springfield Armory Model XD-S, 9 mm pistol when - trying to check to see if the pistol had a round in the chamber - he accidentally shot Garza in the chest when the gun all of a sudden went off. Prosecutors maintain some models of the XD-S have been recalled by the manufacturer because of a safety concern and that Springfield Armory warns that defective pistols could accidentally discharge under “exceptionally rare” conditions. Navarro reportedly said he was aware of the recall but hadn't sent the gun in for repairs because he was concerned the repairs would take too long. Prosecutors maintain Navarro was negligent in the death because he put his own inconvenience over safety.
PLEASANT PRAIRIE, WI, 8/26/15: Police say a Pleasant Prairie man was airlifted to a Milwaukee hospital Thursday morning, after accidently shooting himself in the chest Wednesday evening and spending the night lying in his driveway. A neighbor spotted the 67-year-old man just before 6:30 Thursday morning and called for help. Police and paramedics found the man in his driveway lying next to a utility vehicle. He told officers that had gone out at dusk Wednesday evening to hunt coyotes when his ATV struck a tree. His gun went off, and the bullet hit him in the chest. He apparently collapsed in his driveway, unable to move or call for help, until his neighbor found him. While his injury is serious, he is expected to survive.
GARRISON, MN, 8/27/15: A man accidentally shot himself Thursday while transferring guns to a newly purchased gun safe. The Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office reported receiving the call of the accidental shooting at 5:50 PM Thursday. The man’s girlfriend stated he was not bleeding profusely or under any duress as a result of the shot. Deputies responded to a residence on the 26000 block of County Road 2 in Garrison. The 60-year-old Garrison man told deputies he had purchased a new gun safe earlier in the day and was in the process of moving his unsecured weapons to the safe when the accidental discharge occurred. The man said he was carrying a .22-caliber handgun and did not ensure it was safe to handle. The gun discharged a bullet into the man’s upper left thigh. The man was transported by ambulance to Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd for treatment of his injury. Chief Deputy Denny Lasher said the office responds to any gunshot incident as if it may be intentional, although the man’s story appeared to check out. The man was released later Thursday and informed the sheriff’s office he chose to leave the bullet in his leg. The Pine Center First Responders and ambulance from the Mille Lacs Health System assisted at the scene.
SEAL BEACH, CA, 8/27/15: A man in his 60s accidentally shot himself in the foot, police said on Thursday. The man was removing a shotgun from a vehicle around 2:35 PM in the 1500 block of Homewood Road in Leisure World Seal Beach, a retirement community. At some point when he was holding the gun, he shot himself in the foot, Seal Beach police official, Sgt. Ron Lavelle said. It was not clear Thursday afternoon, what type of shotgun was used and which foot was injured. Lavelle said the man was either a resident or looking to move into the area. He was taken to Long Beach Memorial Hospital in unknown condition.
BURTON, SC, 8/28/15: The Beaufort County Sheriff's Office is investigating an accidental shooting on Milledge Village Road in Burton on Friday. The female victim was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital for treatment of a gunshot wound, according to the Sheriff's Office. Deputies were called to the scene of the incident that was initially reported as a home invasion in which the female was shot and the suspect fled. Further investigation determined the shooting was an accident and apparently done by her boyfriend, who was located at the scene. Everyone involved is cooperating with investigators, the Sheriff's Office said, and the woman's condition was not available. No charges have been filed.
KNOXVILLE, TN, 8/28/15: Knoxville Police Department said they are closing a shooting case after the victim claims she shot herself. Officers responded to 417 Howell Road in Knoxville at 11:28 AM Friday. They found Rebecca Wilker, 18, with a gunshot wound to the face. She said she shot herself and it was an accident, but witnesses saw three men running from the scene. When officer asked Wilker where the gun was, she said she dropped it and didn’t know where it was. Investigators found a 9mm casing inside an RV that was parked in the drive away, but no gun. A squad supervisor located Nathan Duke, 19, and Jordan Mays, 18, near the shooting. They admitted they were at the scene, but said they did not witness the shooting. Duke and May said the victim’s boyfriend, who they knew as “O,” was at home when Wilker was shot. They said the two of them had an argument earlier in the day. As officers canvased the area, they received a 911 call about a break-in at a house a few blocks away from the shooting. A man said he watched his son, Octavious Malone, 22, breaking into his home on a video surveillance system. He said Malone tried to come in the kitchen through a back door, but was turned away and fled the area on foot. The caller said Malone worked at a Hardee’s on Chapman Highway. Officers found a backpack with a handgun in the area around Hardee’s that matched a description from witnesses from the shooting on Howell Road. Wilker was treated at the hospital for a severe eye injury, where she continued to stress that the shooting was an accident and that she shot herself. Based on the lack of any witnesses of the shooting and the victim’s insistence that she shot herself, Knoxville police said they are closing the case as an injured person report. UPDATE: A man wanted for attempted murder was arrested Friday evening after eluding officers for much of the day. Octavious Malone, 22, was caught by officers around 4:40 PM. Malone was wanted for shooting his girlfriend in the face on August 28 at a residence on Howell Street. The victim initially indicated she accidentally shot herself.
ALAMO, IN, 8/28/15: A 72-year-old man died Friday afternoon as the result of an accidental shooting on his property. Warren Gann of rural Alamo was walking toward the woods to look for a raccoon that had been in his barn when he tripped. The fall caused the firearm he was carrying to discharge, striking him in the head. “It was just a freak accident,” said Chief Deputy Ryan Needham of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. Joe Johnson of Crawfordsville was outside with his daughter, who lives near Gann’s home at 4234 South C.R. 600W, when they heard a gunshot and saw Gann’s wife running back and forth. “I could see her crying,” Johnson said. “My daughter and I went down there to try and help out and see if anything was going on.” Johnson’s daughter, Jennifer, called 911 at 2:48 PM. “He was breathing when I got down there,” Johnson said. “And that lasted maybe a couple of minutes. And then it was just nothing.” As family members and neighbors drove up Gann’s long gravel driveway, all were left in tears as they were informed of Gann’s death. Some grieved together while sitting in a huddle on the driveway. Gann lived on a farm and even had a barn with his name on the front. Johnson said Gann was a farmer, “ever since he was like 12 or so.” Assisting at the scene were Crawfordsville Fire Department, Alamo Fire Department and the Montgomery County Coroner.
TERRE HAUTE, IN, 8/28/15: Friday night, troopers assisted the Vigo County Sheriff's Office with disturbances at the Ashley Furniture parking lot, including an accidental shooting with one man transported for treatment.
MOUNT VERNON, NY, 8/28/15: Police Commissioner Bill Bratton has responded to the death of a 61-year-old bystander who was accidentally shot dead by police during an NYPD investigation into illegal gun sales in Mount Vernon. ‘I wish to express my profound sorrow and sympathy to the family of Felix Kumi, an uninvolved bystander who was struck and killed by police gunfire during an undercover gun-buy operation last night. Mr. Kumi was blameless, and this tragedy has tested and tried his family. I pray that they may find comfort in their hope of resurrection and awakening, and I tender the Department’s support and service in their grief,’ Bratton said in a Saturday afternoon statement. Authorities on Friday said two people total were shot during the undercover police investigation, including Kumi and a 37-year-old suspect. Mount Vernon Police Commissioner Terrence Raynor says it happened around 4 PM Friday. The undercover officer was contacted by suspect Jeffrey Aristy, 28, who told him he has guns for sale. They met in the Bronx where the Aristy got into the officer’s vehicle and directed him to drive to Mount Vernon. The officer parked his vehicle in the vicinity of Beekman Avenue and Tecumseh Avenue when a second suspect got into the backseat then pointed what police say was a BB gun at the officer’s head while demanding money. The officer complied and handed the suspect his money who then attempted to flee. After signaling to his backup team, the officer got out of his vehicle and as he attempted to stop the suspect, the second suspect pointed his gun towards the officer. Raynor says “things went awry” and several gunshots were fired in a residential neighborhood near Beekman Avenue and Pease Street. The officer shot, striking the second suspect three times in the torso. The 61-year-old male bystander was standing behind the suspect and was also struck in the torso. The bystander was taken to Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx, where he died Saturday. Raynor says the 37-year-old suspect was also taken to the hospital. Aristy initially fled but has since been taken into custody. Aristy was has been charged with four counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance and two counts of criminal sale of firearms. Charges were pending for the 37-year-old shot suspect. Officials say no officers were injured.
BIRMINGHAM, AL, 8/28/15: A man was shot in the chest Friday night and was taken to UAB Hospital with life-threatening injuries, police said. Around 8:30 PM, police received a call about a man who had been shot in the 200 block of 73rd Street North. When they arrived, they discovered a man in his 20s with at least one gunshot wound to the chest, Birmingham Police Department Sgt. Sarafino Lovetto said. The man was alert and was able to talk to officers. An officer at the scene suggested the shooting might have been accidental. "We're investigating exactly what happened here, and we're not sure yet if this was an accidental shooting or not," Lovetto said. "Our homicide unit is here collecting evidence, which is protocol for shootings."
PROVO, UT, exact date unknown: A Utah County Attorney's Office employee accidentally fired a gun in the Provo office last week — but no one was injured by the stray bullet. County Attorney Jeff Buhman confirmed Wednesday that a shot was accidentally fired through a window sometime last week. He said an employee — a concealed carry permit holder — had brought a new handgun to work, and gave it to another employee who wanted to see it. Buhman said that employee, who is also permitted to carry a concealed weapon, "failed to fully render it safe and accidentally or negligently fired a round." The shot went through a window, according to Buhman. Police officers later looked for the bullet outside, but couldn't find it. "It's probably in the grass somewhere," Buhman said. The county attorney declined to identify the employee who fired the weapon or say whether he or she is an attorney within the office. He also did not detail any disciplinary action taken against the employee. "We certainly have a policy that you don't fire a gun in the office," Buhman said. "It's definitely a problem and we are dealing with it." Buhman said people in his office, prosecutors in particular, often carry weapons with them because they have been threatened in the past. "They go through training every year," he said. "They fire at least two times during the year, and re-qualify every year. This was just a mistake."
WEDDINGTON, NC, 8/29/15: Prominent Charlotte minister Phillip Davis was found dead of an apparently accidental self-inflicted gunshot wound inside his Union County home Saturday, officials said. According to the Union County Sheriff's Office, Davis' wife Cynthia called 911 around 1:10 PM and said her 62-year-old husband had shot himself at his home on Waybridge Way in Weddington. Deputies told Channel 9 that Mrs. Davis found the pastor collapsed at his desk. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene. According to Chief Deputy Ben Bailey, there were no signs of foul play. “Based on the preliminary investigation and interviews at the residence, it does appear that this was an accidental shooting,” Bailey said. Investigators said Davis contacted his adult son earlier that morning and told him he planned a trip to the firing range, and invited him along, although his son was unable to join him. Deputies said Davis was in the process of cleaning his pistol at the desk when it accidentally fired, striking him in the chest. Davis was the senior pastor at Nations Ford Community Church, and was a preacher for more than 40 years. He also preached on television and traveled extensively in his work. He had been vocal in the weeks leading up to Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer Randall “Wes” Kerrick’s manslaughter trial. Kerrick was charged in the killing of Jonathon Ferrell in 2013. Jurors in Kerrick's recent trial could not agree on a verdict, which led to a mistrial and on Friday, Attorney General Roy Cooper said he would not retry the officer. In June, prior to the trial, Davis and nearly 100 other pastors and community leaders had a conversation about what would happen in Charlotte when Kerrick went to trial. They spoke against violent protests ahead of the officer’s trial. "You hear frustration, you hear concern and, yes, you hear anger," Davis said at the June meeting. Davis said he wanted to support churches to take the lead in offering alternatives to destructive behavior during protests while acknowledging that communities need to be allowed to express their anger and frustration. "We’ve got together ourselves to discuss and then have plans and strategies to help make the situation a peaceful situation," Davis said. Union County Sheriff Eddie Cathey and his deputies told Channel 9 they extend their condolences to the family, and appreciate their understanding and cooperation during the investigation.
DENVER, CO, 8/29/15: A victim of a shooting at King Soopers is in critical, but stable condition, according to Denver Police. Police believe that the victim is a female. They say she was shot at the King Soopers at 2727 W. Evans in Denver around 6:40 PM on Saturday. She was transported in an unknown condition. Denver Police tweeted on Saturday evening that they responded to a call of an accidental shooting, but the circumstances of how the shooting happened are still not known, police said Sunday. A male suspect is in custody, but there has not been a decision on whether he will face charges and what those charges may be.
BELLEFONTAINE, OH, 8/29/15: Two adults have been charged with child endangering in what appears to be an accidental shooting Saturday. Michael J. Blair, 44, of 804 W. Patterson Ave., and Dianne M. Harriell, 28, of Dayton, were charged, according to an incident report filed by officers of the Bellefontaine Police Department. Javon Pence, 13, of 1121 W. Columbus Ave., was reportedly hit by a bullet from a 10mm handgun. He was not seriously injured, but he was flown by a MedFlight helicopter to Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus for treatment. Another 13-year-old boy was listed in the report as a suspect and may have handled the firearm. Officers seized a handgun, a small amount of marijuana and two glass pipes from the residence. No other details were available.
NASHVILLE, TN, 8/29/15: Metro police have arrested two teens and plan to arrest a third believed to be responsible for a string of at least four separate armed holdups during which two clerks were shot. Police have arrested Jamie Brandon, 19, of South Fifth Street and a 17-year-old. They also plan to arrest Cavelle Rondo, 19, of 23rd Avenue North. Each will be charged in Saturday morning’s robberies at the Mystic Express, 4199 Nolensville Pike, followed by the Shell at 1190 S. Gallatin Pike, where one of the suspects shot a clerk while they were leaving the gas station. Police said the clerk had complied with their robbery demands. Police were led to the suspects when they all arrived at TriStar Skyline Medical Center a short time after the Shell robbery. Rondo reported that he had shot himself in the leg. As police continued the investigation this week, they determined Rondo and Jamie Brandon were involved in the Aug. 26 robbery of the Subway at 450 Donelson Pike, immediately followed by the holdup of the Shell across the street, where the clerk was shot in the leg. Brandon and the 17-year-old were taken into custody Tuesday afternoon. Police said photos of the three suspects are being withheld pending lineups in other commercial robberies countywide and that the investigation is ongoing. Police said Rondo will be arrested upon his release from the hospital. The clerks were treated for non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.
MURFREESBORO, TN, 8/29/15 [NEW]: The Siegel High School student who was shot in the head in what the family is calling an accident has passed away. Mason Loupe died at Vanderbilt University Medical Center just after 2:10 PM Wednesday. “Mason is with Jesus,” his mother Melanie said. “I donated his organs and they have already found matches.” The high school sophomore was shot in the head on Saturday and has been in the hospital since in critical condition. Loupe, a member of both the football and wrestling teams, was 15 years old. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the family with medical bills.
RHINELANDER, WI, 8/29/15: A Rhinelander man faces charges for firing a gun while drunk in downtown Rhinelander early Saturday morning. Prosecutors accuse 23-year-old Anthony Sackett of shooting the gun near Brown and Davenport Streets around 12:35 that morning. According to court documents, Sackett told police he had six drinks that night. Sackett was arguing with another man outside when the other man simulated shooting a shotgun. The court documents indicate that Sackett then grabbed a gun out of his car and told the other man, "If you shoot me, I'm going to kill you." Sackett told police he accidentally fired the gun when he inserted the clip, although he also said the gun was pointed in the