Washington Evening Journal

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Neighbors Growing Together | Nov 20, 2017

Accidental discharge reported at police station

By David Hotle | Aug 04, 2014

A set of keys hanging from a gear bag is reportedly the cause of an accidental discharge of a Washington Police officer’s sidearm that occurred Thursday evening at the Washington Police Department.
Washington Police Chief Greg Goodman said today that the sidearm going off was a “freak accident.” During the investigation of the incident, he said that officers were able to re-create the events that led to the firing of the gun. He said that a key had slid between the side of the holster and the gun and had gotten into the trigger guard.
“The only thing we can figure is a key, which is a long shot, got into the area, hooked into the trigger and when he pulled the bag off, the key pulled the trigger,” Goodman said.
Officer Brian Van Willigen had reportedly come in to work Thursday evening carrying his gear bag and wearing his belt with his holster and sidearm. Goodman said that he always carries the gear bag to work and has done so for years. He walked through the door and walked to the counter. Goodman said that Van Willigen had taken his bag off his shoulder and there was a loud bang. Van Willigen’s .40-caliber Glock 22 had gone off in its holster. Officer Chad Huschka told Van Willigen to sit down. Huschka checked Van Willigen for injuries. Van Willigen had a hole in his duty pants and some bruising as a result of the incident. There is a hole in the carpet and a piece of the fragmented bullet had entered a door in the station.

Comments (1)
Posted by: Thomas Langr | Aug 04, 2014 21:02

That would cause a cold sweat!


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