Wesley Chapel, FL — Imagine for a moment that you were carrying a pistol in a public space and all of the sudden, you accidentally fire off a round. Now, imagine if this place was a school.
There are two possible scenarios that would take place; the first one being that police return fire and you are killed. The second, less lethal result would be your inevitable arrest and charges of public endangerment, unlawful discharge, illegal use of a firearm, assault with a deadly weapon, terrorism, or a myriad of other infractions associated with sending a deadly projectile hurling through a space occupied by innocent children. You would immediately be facing fines, jail time, probation, and firearms restrictions.
However, if you are a government agent who’s trusted with carrying a deadly weapon into places others cannot, you needn’t worry about any of those repercussions. The scenario below just so happens to prove it.
A school resource officer at Weightman Middle School in Wesley Chapel, Florida did just that, and fired his gun in the school’s cafeteria this week.
As WFLA reports, the officer, who was not named by the sheriff’s office, was “leaning against the wall when his holstered, duty-issued firearm incidentally discharged into the wall behind him,” deputies say. There were no injuries to students, staff or the school resource officer.
“We’d like to reiterate that the weapon discharged directly into the wall and no students were in danger,” the sheriff’s office spokeswoman said in a statement.
“When I first heard the gunshot…I was like what if there is a school shooting and this is where I die?” 6th grader Chanel Patel said.
“I grab my tray he’s right here and BOOM, it happened,” 8th grader Madison Lane described. “It scared me so bad I dropped my tray!”
“It just really scared me because it was so loud,” she added.
Police are now attempting to claim that the gun “just went off” without the deputy doing anything to cause it.
“There are a number of features on the threat level 3 holsters that we carry with our firearms, so there are a number of dynamic factors that are involved with fine motor skills functions that would cause that to happen,” Lt. Troy Ferguson with the Pasco Sheriff’s Office said. “So we have to really kind of dissect that.”
It is important to point out that Sig Sauer is facing a lawsuit currently because their pistols were found in 2016 to accidentally fire if dropped at a certain angle. The drop fail was very rare, but it did happen. However, Sig Sauer recalled all the P320 9mm handguns and updated them so that this extremely rare occurrence would not happen again. Never, however, have there been any proven instances in which a Sig Sauer has just “gone off” while sitting in a holster.
Guns do not fire themselves.
Weapons companies spend a significant amount of time and money making sure their guns don’t simply ‘go off.’ While it is entirely possible for older single action revolvers, which required the hammer to be cocked, to go off, the idea of a modern pistol accidentally firing without someone disturbing it is simply absurd.
There are more guns than people in the United States. It is estimated that Americans own around 357 million firearms. If these weapons were so prone to accidentally firing, there would be a lot of dead Americans. However, that is clearly not the case.
The reality is that these cases of guns “accidentally firing” most always involve police, who are entrusted by the public to responsibly carry weapons into places the common folks cannot. You could rest assured that if a mere citizen were to shoot their gun in a school, even ‘accidentally,’ they would be cast out by the anti-gun crowd and plastered across the mainstream media. They would also be in jail.
However, if your job is to carry a firearm for a living to ostensibly protect society and you do this, you are immediately presumed innocent and given special treatment.
Last year, TFTP reported the story of a cop in Fowerville, MI who fired his gun inside the school basketball gym. The shot caused such a panic that students and parents watching the basketball game trampled each other trying to get out of the gym.
Just like the case above, police claimed the gun just went off.
In 2016, TFTP reported on three instances in a single week in which officers accidentally fired their weapons. Some of the unintended victims were not as lucky as the people in the school that day.
At a Halloween party in October 2016, a cop in North Carolina shot and severely injured her own daughter as she showed off her service weapon. She was not charged.
Prior to that shooting, a cop in Ohio fired his weapon into a daycare center — while it was fully occupied.
Just after those two shootings, a 20-year veteran deputy of the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department was shot and killed by his fellow officer. Officials immediately ruled it an accident and began the narrative that the gun somehow just went off on its own.
Deputy Sgt. Rod Lucas was having a conversation near the Fresno Yosemite International Airport about how to carry backup weapons when one deputy’s weapon was discharged striking Lucas in the chest.
Lucas was in the room with two other deputies, and, according to Mims, there was no dispute at the time — ironically, just a conversation about weapons safety.
“The detective had his weapon out. During this discussion, the detective’s weapon discharged,” the sheriff said. “Sgt. Lucas was struck by the bullet in his chest, and he dropped to the ground.”