Thursday, February 28, 2013

State trooper's handgun unintentionally discharges during staff meeting

Lt. Shawn Currie, who heads the commercial vehicle enforcement division of the Maine State Police, was in a staff meeting when he unintentionally discharged his handgun.
According to the chief of the state police, Currie was taking a computer training class with two other officers when, "he had an ache or a pain. He put his hand on his weapon to push it away from his body. It was in his holster. The trigger wasn't exposed."
The weapon was a newer-model .45-caliber H&K handgun that is supposedly designed to prevent unintentional discharges. No one was injured in the incident.
"We don't know of any other instances where this has happened," said the chief.
The gun was taken for analysis and police will run tests to see if they can re-create the condition of the discharge to see if there is a problem with the gun.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Man unintentionally kills his brother, distraught he then kills himself

19-year-old Kody Thacker, of Somerset, Kentucky, had spent the night at a friend's house with his brother, 24-year-old Kyle. Kyle was asleep in a recliner in the living room and Kody was on a nearby couch.
At about 9:20 in the morning, Kody picked up a 12-gauge shot gun and unintentionally discharged the gun, hitting Kyle in the head, killing him instantly. Distraught over what had happened, Kody turned the gun on himself and took his life.
Neighbors say their hearts go out to the family who now has to deal with losing two loved ones in one day.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

12-year-old drops gun at gun range, unintentionally shoots two people

A 12-year-old Georgia girl was with three adults at the Chestnut Mountain Shooting Range. She fired an Easter Arms double barrel shotgun and was startled by the recoil. She dropped the gun, which then unintentionally discharged.
Paul and Christina Ponziani were about 10 yeards down range from the girl. Both were struck in the lower legs by the shotgun blast.
The couple was taken to the hospital for treatment. Christina had to be admitted.
According to the local sheriff, "The recoil was so much with her not being experienced to shoot a shotgun like that, it feel from her arms when she shot it." He does not plan to file any charges in the incident but added, "it's never a good idea to mix small children and guns."

Monday, February 25, 2013

Drunk man unintentionally shot in head

An unidentified 20-year-old Texas man when to his friend's house near Mission, Texas. He told his friend he needed to borrow his gun because someone was looking for him.
The gun owner told his friend he couldn't have the gun because it was loaded and he was drunk. At which point the drunk man grabbed the gun, pulled the slide back, took the bullet out of the chamber, tossed it at the gun owner and proceeded to leave.
The gun owner jumped the man from behind and grabbed for the gun. During the struggle, the gun unintentionally discharged, striking the drunk man in the head.
He was taken to the local hospital where he is listed in critical condition.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Man puts ammunition magazine in oven, friend injured when she turned oven on

25-year-old Javarksi Sandy, of St. Petersburg, Florida, took the ammunition magazine containing four bullets out of his .45-caliber Glock handgun. He put the magazine in the oven and the handgun in a drawer.
Later that evening Sandy and his friend, 18-year-old Aalya Walker, decided to have some waffles. So Walker turned the oven on. Walker was injured when the bullets exploded, hitting her with shrapnel in her leg and chest.
Walker took the bus to the hospital where she was treated and released. Sandy, who has a concealed weapons permit, was not charged in the incident.
Bullets can explode at temperatures as low as 280 degrees. The tv show MythBusters recreated this very situation in 2007. They found that while the bullets exploded in an oven, "without a gun barrel to contain and direct the propellant gases, the bullets did not develop enough speed" to be fatal and that "the shell casing actually caused more damage than the bullets." However, they found that a loaded gun put in an oven "automatically discharged and sent the bullet out of the oven, which could potentially kill anybody who happened to be standing in front of the oven."

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Woman unintentionally shoots herself inside Detroit's Motor City casino

A 29-year-old woman unintentionally shot herself in the leg early Tuesday morning inside the Motor City casino in Detroit, Michigan.
Reports are sketchy but indicate that the unidentified woman had a gun in her purse that unintentionally discharged shooting her in the leg. She was taken to the hospital where she is listed in stable condition.
One witness told reporters, "People started running and the guard told us to move out of the way, to go to the back of the casino because somebody was in there shooting."
A spokesperson for the casino said the woman had a concealed weapons permit but added that it is still illegal for someone to bring a gun into the casino.
Police are still investigating the incident.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Man showing teenager how to handle a gun unintentionally shoots him. Teen may be paralyzed.

16-year-old Roy Weichers, of Millville, California, and a friend were at the house of 44-year-old Danny Gray. Gray was showing the teens how to handle and fire his Glock .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun. According to news reports they were "practicing shooting techniques."
The police report that during a break "one of the teens there loaded the gun and they continued showing the shooting practice."
Gray was showing Roy how to fire the gun. He didn't realize the weapon was loaded and unintentionally shot Roy.
Roy is in the hospital in serious, but stable, condition. Doctors tried to remove the bullet in surgery but discovered it was wedged in Roy's spine. They were able to remove the bullet in a follow-up surgery but don't know whether or not Roy will be left paralyzed in his left leg.
"He is doing as well as can be expected," said his mother. "He will not fully recover...It will change his life forever."
Gray says he feels terrible but that this is a tragic accident.
Police are still investigating and haven't decided yet if charges will be filed.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Ohio woman caught in crossfire while walking home, dies

45-year-old Valetta Martin, of Cleveland, Ohio, was walking to her apartment when she got caught in the crossfire between two men shooting at each other. Valetta, who had celebrated her birthday the day before, was shot in the chest. She was taken to the local hospital where she was pronounced dead.
According to a neighbor, "I never looked out the window, I just took cover. It lasted for about 15 minutes. You hear shots around here all the time." Another neighbor said she heard gunshots about 10:40 and looked out the window and saw Valetta lying on the ground.
Valetta was the mother of five chilren. She also had four grandchildren. "Lala loved church, children, talking and laughing," said her sister.
Relatives said they were planning a surprise birthday party for Valetta but are now planning her funeral.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Woman shot in both legs after dropped handgun discharges

A Colorado Springs, CO woman was getting into the passenger seat of her boyfriend's car when she knocked a handgun off the seat. When the loaded gun hit the floor it unintentionally discharged, shooting the woman.
The bullet passed through both of her calves. She was taken to the hospital for treatment and is expected to recover.
No one was charged in the shooting, but her boyfriend was taken into custody on an unrelated warrant.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Man unintentionally shoots and kills girlfriend's 3-year-old son

21-year-old Nicholas Barbee, of Paducah, Kentucky, bought a gun for protection in response to an increase in break-ins in his neighborhood. Saturday afternoon he was taking the gun from a cabinet when he unintentionally discharged the firearm, shooting 3-year-old Braydion Matlock.
Braydion was shot in the head. He was airlifted to the medical center in Nashville, Tennessee, but died Saturday night.
Barbee, who is Braydion's mother's boyfriend, admitted to police that he unintentional shot the boy. He has been charged with manslaughter.
According to Braydion's obituary, his favorite movie was "Cars" and he enjoyed baseball and basketball.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Man gives 3-year-old son rifle for Christmas present. A few months later, toddler unintentionally shoots and kills himself with handgun.

25-year-old Joshua Heagren, of Mount Vernon, Ohio has been found guilty of child endangering and negligent homicide in the death of his 3-year-old son, Lucas. In May, Lucas found a loaded, unlocked handgun in the living room couch. He unintentionally discharged the gun, shooting himself in the head. Lucas died of his injuries a few hours later.
According to the prosecutor, two photos of Heagren showing his son how to shoot a gun were crucial to the case. One photo was of Heagren showing Lucas how to shoot a .22 rifle he had given the boy for Christmas. The other was a photo of Lucas holding an assault rifle. Both photos had been posted on Facebook.
A doctor specializing in developmental and behavioral pediatrics testifying in the case said toddlers cannot understand the dangers of guns and it was inappropriate to simply say "Don't touch."
Heagren has not yet been sentenced.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Famous people who have been involved in unintentional shootings has an interesting article, 8 Famous People Who Accidentally Shot Themselves. The article was a follow-up to the recent incident where 24-year-old Bryce Brentz, a prospect for the Boston Red Sox, shot himself in the leg while cleaning a handgun. Brentz was fortunate that the bullet entered and exited his leg without causing major damage leaving his baseball career on track.
TheWeek chronicles unintentional shootings involving Al Capone, Lil' Wayne and Plaxico Burress and others.
Not included in the article is the 1990 incident involving Charlie Sheen and Kelly Preston. Preston was picking up a pair of Sheen's pants off the bathroom floor when a revolver fell out of the pocket, hit the floor and discharged. Kelly was hit by shrapnel.
Another unintentional shooting is the 1977 shooting involving Andy Williams' ex-wife Claudine Longet and Olympic skier Spider Sabich. Sabich was showing Longet how to use a gun when she unintentionally discharged the weapon, shooting him in the abdomen. Sabich died of his injuries and Longet was later convicted of criminal negligence and spent 30 days in jail.
If you know of other unintentional shootings involving famous people please let us know. E-mail

Monday, February 11, 2013

Student at U. of Arkansas unintentionally shot in hand

Matthew Williamson is a student at the University of Arkansas. He has a work-study job at the radio station. Friday morning before heading to work he put a newly purchased Taurus .45-caliber revolver in his backpack. He was planning on going to the gun range after work.
He was showing a co-worker the gun in his backpack when the gun unintentionally discharged, shooting Williamson in the left hand. The gun was loaded with a small shotgun round that sent fragments that damaged Williamson's index finger and the meaty part of his hand. He is in danger of losing his finger.
Williamson sent a photo of his hand to a local tv station that showed the numerous stitches and pins doctors used to put his hand back together. However, because of the graphic nature of the wound the station decided to not air the picture.
Williamson does not have a permit to carry a concealed gun and also violated university policy of no firearms on school property. He could face charges on both counts.
Williamson said he owns several guns but after this incident he plans to sell them all. "I'm pretty despondent about the whole thing," he said.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Woman unintentionally shoots husband at McDonald's

48-year-old Barbara Master, of Bend, Oregon, and her husband, Richard Cooper, were at a local McDonald's restaurant. The couple was sitting in the restaurant's dining area when Masters leaned over and a .22-caliber Derringer handgun fell out of her pocket and hit the floor.

When the gun hit the floor, the impact caused the gun to go off, shooting Cooper in the abdomen. He was take to the local hospital where he was listed in serious condition.
Carney was charged with third degree assault and reckless endangering. Reports do not indicate whether or not Cooper had a concealed carry permit for the gun, however she was not charged with carrying a weapon without a permit.
Firearms are the only consumer product not regulated by a federal agency for health and safety. A gun that discharges when it hits the floor clearly has a design flaw yet the Consumer Product Safety Commission has no authority to issue a recall on any guns.
Customers in the restaurant where shocked to hear the gun go off. "Obviously, with all the things going on in our country and round the world, anything like this will affect people, and it is really scary," said a customer.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Fort Carson soldier unintentionally shoots another soldier; PA police sergeant unintentionally shoots himself in the foot

21-year-old Zachary Clay and 18-year-old Reid Potwin, both soldiers stationed at Fort Carson in Colorado, and some other friends had finished target practicing at a home shooting range in eastern Colorado.
Clay was cleaning his gun, manipulating the slide of his .40 caliber handgun, when he unintentionally discharged the gun. Potwin was shot in the leg.
Potwin was flown to the hospital in Colorado Springs for treatment of a non life-threatening injury.
A 23-year veteran of the Upper Gwynedd Township Police in Pennsylvania unintentionally shot himself in the foot during a firearms training in Hatfield Township.
Sgt. Stephen Gillen was removing his handgun from his holster when he unintentionally discharged the gun, shooting a round into his left foot.
Gillen was conducting his annual firearms training and was under supervision of two certified range instructors.
He was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Deputy in Oklahoma unintentionally shot at gun range, detective in New Jersey unintentionally shoots himself in the leg

An Oklahoma County Sheriff's deputy was unintentionally shot at a gun range in Spencer, Oklahoma on Monday.
The sheriff's office was at the range for routine training when two deputies went inside a classroom. According to officials one of the deputies was checking his weapon when he unintentionally discharged the gun, shooting the other deputy in the leg. The deputy was taken to the hospital with a non life-threatening injury.
On Tuesday, a detective with the Gloucester County, New Jersey Prosecutor's Office unintentionally shot himself in the leg. The shooting occurred in the parking lot outside of the Gloucester County Justice Complex.
According to officials, the detective was getting into his car when he unintentionally discharged his weapon. He was taken to the hospital with a non-life threatening injury.
The shooting caused a brief lockdown at a high school across the street from the Justice Complex.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Teen buys rifle, later that day unintentionally shoots friend in the leg

18-year-old Kory Denton, of Crescent, Iowa, was target shooting with two friends. Kory's friend had just purchased a high powered rifle and the teens were checking it out.
They had finished shooting and were clearing out the weapon when they discovered that a cartridge was stuck in the gun. They were trying to remove the cartridge with a screwdriver when they unintentionally discharged the weapon.
The muzzle was pointed at Kory's leg and he was shot in the thigh.
Kory was taken to the local hospital and then flown by helicopter to a university medical trauma unit for surgery. The sheriff says Kory has a lot of recovery time ahead of him and it's very fortunate he wasn't more seriously injured, especially since the weapon is capable of doing a lot of damage.
Iowa does not require any gun safety training before residents can purchase a long gun.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Soldier pleads guilty to unintentionally shooting and killing friend while trying to scare away hiccups

27-year-old Spc. Patrick Myers, of Spartanburg, South Carolina has pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, saying he unintentionally shot his friend while trying to scare away his hiccups.
Myers and his friend, Pfc. Isaac Young, of Ash Grove, Missouri, were both stationed at Fort Hood military base in Killeen, Texas. They were watching a football game with a friend.
According to police, "Young had the hiccups. Myers pulled out a handgun to scare him in order to stop the hiccups."
Myers told police he thought the weapon was loaded with dummy rounds. He unintentionally discharged the gun and shot Young in the face, killing him.
Myers was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in military prison. In addtion, he was demoted to private and will receive a bad-conduct discharge.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Man openly carrying gun in holster in downtown cafe unintentionally shoots himself

A 26-year-old Eugene, Oregon man unintentionally shot himself in the thigh with a handgun he was openly carrying in a holster on his leg.
The man was using the bathroom at Indra's Internet Lounge in downtown Eugene when he unintentionally discharged the gun. According to the owner of the cafe, after shooting himself the man crawled out of the bathroom and employees put a tourniquet on his leg to stop the bleeding until medical crews arrived. The owner added that the man was a regular at the cafe and was familiar with guns.
Police noted that in Oregon it is legal for someone to openly carry a holstered gun. Furthermore, someone wishing to openly carry a gun is not required to obtain any sort of carrying permit or undergo any sort of gun safety training.
Police are not releasing the man's name and don't plan on issuing any charges.