Sansom Park, TX — Police officers in Texas — in instances of school shootings — do not have very good track records. Given the catastrophically tragic screw-up in Uvalde, during which cops stood around as the shooter murdered children, one would think that they would need to be extra diligent moving forward. Perhaps that was the reason officers in Fort Worth carried out a school shooting training exercise over the weekend. But it certainly did not go as planned and definitely did not illustrate any extra diligence.
On Saturday, the Forest Hill Police Department was doing a training exercise at David K. Sellars Elementary School with Sansom Park PD and other individual officers from unidentified North Texas departments. Because it was a training exercise, no officers were supposed to be given live ammunition. However, at least one of them found a way to get some.
Around 2 p.m. on Saturday, the routine training exercise turned chaotic when officer Lina Mino was shot in the face by a fellow officer.
Exactly how live rounds found their way inside one of the weapons used in the training is a mystery. Lake Worth Police Chief J.T. Manoushagian told local media that the guns used in training undergo extensive checks to prevent such tragedies but apparently this time, at least one slipped through the cracks.
“There are three checks that are done before the training starts. The three-check process is a three-step process. With a self-check, a buddy check, and an instructor check,” said Manoushagian.
The officer who shot Mino in the face must have missed the buddy check, instructor check, and the self-check too. Rest assured, however, that no criminal intent was found and police were extremely quick to dispel any rumors as such.
"At this time, there is not any reason to believe that there is a criminal element here, but obviously, anytime we have a shooting like this, we will conduct a thorough and proper investigation into it," Everman Police Chief Craig Spencer said. "This is a truly tragic situation all the way around. This is not something that is common."
Recommended for You
"The training provider is the one who provided the weapons. This was not a live fire training, that’s all I know. How the weapon was introduced, we don’t know," he explained.
According to police, the Texas Rangers have taken over the investigation and are attempting to figure out how a gun with live rounds made its way into a school during a training exercise.
For those who remember, officer Mino was fired in 2019 after she opened fire on an unarmed man during a traffic stop. Apparently, Mino became a gypsy cop and was hired on to a neighboring department.
Not surprisingly, TFTP has reported on a similar incident before. In August 2016, Punta Gorda police officer Lee Coel gunned down 73-year-old Mary Knowlton in front of dozens of stunned onlookers, during a demonstration about police use of deadly force. Like the instance in Fort Worth, all the guns were supposed to be unloaded but they weren't and Coel killed an innocent woman because of it.
More than six months passed while law enforcement conducted their investigation and it was announced in 2017 that Coel was being charged. However, thanks to a corrupt system, Coel never went to jail and he's been living a normal life despite laying waste to the lives of the Knowlton family.
More than 6 years after Coel killed Knowlton, her family is still seeking justice. In July, they found out that they will have to wait longer for that justice to come.
In 2017, Coel was charged with manslaughter, a first-degree felony, and took a plea deal in 2019 which allowed him to avoid jail in exchange for 10 years of probation. He then went to court 4 months ago to ask the judge to let him off of that probation — 7 years early — and a judge is still considering it.