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View Full Version : Could hugging a policeman cause his gun to fire?


gunnergoz
07-08-2012, 08:32 PM
I know the title will cause tittering among some, but this pertains to a tragic event just reported by the media:
DETROIT (AP) - A woman celebrating the weekend before her 25th birthday was fatally shot Sunday when she hugged an off-duty police officer while dancing at a party, causing the officer's service weapon to fire, according to police and her mother.

Adaisha Miller would have turned 25 on Monday, according to her mother, Yolanda McNair.

The shooting happened at an outdoor social gathering about 12:30 a.m., said police Sgt. Eren Stephens. It happened on the city's west side.

According to Stephens, the woman "embraced the officer from behind, causing the holstered weapon to accidently discharge." The bullet punctured Miller's lung and hit her heart, and she died at a hospital.

Stephens said the Detroit officer will remain on administrative duties while authorities investigate the shooting and report their findings to the Wayne County prosecutor. The officer's name was not released.

"For this to happen to her, whether they want to call it freak accident or mistake in judgment, it should have never happened to my child, and there's nothing I can do to get her back," McNair told WDIV-TV.

McNair said her daughter was out to mark her upcoming birthday.

"All she wanted to do was enjoy the weekend for her birthday," the mother said. "She had every right to enjoy turning 25 and look beyond that."

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20120708/D9VT1JTO1.html

Personally, I find it inconceivable that such an accidental trigger pull could be set off by the simple pressure of a hug. Most officers that I knew carried weapons in holsters that were basically designed to prevent accidental discharge and unauthorized manipulation of the weapon by someone other than the wearer.

So my question to those of you more familiar with the current crop of handguns most likely carried by police officers, is such a thing even possible? If so, under what circumstances (gun, holster, type of manipulation) might it happen?

running coach
07-08-2012, 08:36 PM
The gun would have to be pointed backward and up to hit the heart/lungs of someone directly behind. The trigger would have to be exposed and something in contact for it to be activated.

I think there was some unsafe gun handling involved.

core_dump
07-08-2012, 08:40 PM
Doesn't really matter what most officers carry or what most holsters will prevent, all that matters is what this equipment was. And that we don't know.

I agree with runner pat, the location of the wound makes this sound awfully suspicious. I'll give the officer the benefit of the doubt and assume that he wasn't playing with the weapon. At 12:30am with a female involved it's possible they were doing something more than dancing and the department thought it was nobody's business what was really going on.

panache45
07-08-2012, 09:21 PM
Not what I assumed this thread was about.

Shagnasty
07-08-2012, 09:23 PM
Guns don't accidentally fire when dropped, banged, hugged, left in hot vehicles etc. They do fire when you pull the trigger. That sounds obvious but the public and the media is filled with false reports of guns 'that just went off'. Guns are remarkably stable until the trigger causes the firing pin to hit the primer.

I don't know how such a thing can happen based on the story. There has to be more to it. As noted, guns are carried pointed towards the ground so any accidental discharge should have hit the person carrying it in the leg or the ground itself. Any other speculation isn't worth going through because the story obviously isn't credible just based on the details that were left out.

steronz
07-08-2012, 09:27 PM
There are (http://garritysgunleather.com/Shoulder0055.jpg) shoulder (http://www.dlsports.com/holster_dual_j_frame_revolver_shoulder/pic_2008_02_14_jx2holsters_med.jpg) holsters (http://aecincorp.com/images/h19s2.jpg) that point the weapon backwards, some even point it up and backwards. In every single one I can find a picture of, the trigger is completely contained in the holster. I'm not sure how the trigger would accidentally get pulled.

gunnergoz
07-08-2012, 09:52 PM
That's what prompted my original post and questions. I've owned several shoulder holsters myself and they all covered the trigger mechanism. This "accident" sounds pretty suspiciously like horseplay or stupidity (or a combination of the two) to me.

core_dump
07-08-2012, 10:19 PM
Guns don't accidentally fire when dropped, banged, hugged, left in hot vehicles etc. They do fire when you pull the trigger. That sounds obvious but the public and the media is filled with false reports of guns 'that just went off'.

My CZ-52 will fire when decocked. I have a striker-fired junk gun (I think it's a Davis) that will fire if you breathe on it wrong. If I was irresponsible enough to carry one of these around and something awful happened, I would just be another one of those "false" media reports, I would assume?

Doesn't the state of California require drop tests on firearm models? It would be interesting to see if they've rejected any.

At any rate I believe a more correct statement is modern, unmodified firearms in good working order do not generally go bang until you press the trigger.

aceplace57
07-08-2012, 10:21 PM
If it's a penile, cap & ball revolver then yes hugging a cop could set it off.

:D

Rigamarole
07-08-2012, 10:25 PM
According to Stephens, the woman "embraced the officer from behind, causing the holstered weapon to accidently discharge."

OK, but what about the gun?

Fubaya
07-08-2012, 10:28 PM
Strange, one article says it was in his waistband covered by his shirt and that he was dancing with his wife when the girl came up and hugged him.

Scumpup
07-08-2012, 10:33 PM
No. Absolutely not. There was egregious mishandling or deliberate intent.

AaronX
07-08-2012, 10:45 PM
Do off duty officers carry loaded weapons?

running coach
07-08-2012, 10:49 PM
Do off duty officers carry loaded weapons?

Some depts. require their officers to carry when off-duty. Others allow it but it's the officer's choice.

AaronX
07-08-2012, 11:59 PM
Is there protocol on whether a round should be chambered?

running coach
07-09-2012, 12:16 AM
Is there protocol on whether a round should be chambered?

No idea but it would be utter foolishness to not have a round chambered. Imagine having to draw from concealment and taking the extra time to rack the slide before firing.
An extra split second is an eternity in a gunfight.

Dog80
07-09-2012, 12:19 AM
Is there protocol on whether a round should be chambered?

A gun should be carried with a round chambered, else it is useless.

It is only in the movies where they cock the gun right before using it. In some movies they will do it multiple times in the same scene for no apparent reason, which means the gun is ejecting perfectly good unused rounds.

Der Trihs
07-09-2012, 12:22 AM
Guns don't accidentally fire when dropped, banged, hugged, left in hot vehicles etc. They do fire when you pull the trigger. That sounds obvious but the public and the media is filled with false reports of guns 'that just went off'. Guns are remarkably stable until the trigger causes the firing pin to hit the primer.Yes, that's what guns are supposed to be like, but some poorly made ones do go off at a bump. I recall a news story some years ago about a Chinese made rifle that would sometimes fire if someone jarred it; it was in the news because the NRA wanted importation of it to be allowed, while others were trying to ban it as unsafe.

AaronX
07-09-2012, 12:46 AM
No idea but it would be utter foolishness to not have a round chambered. Imagine having to draw from concealment and taking the extra time to rack the slide before firing.
An extra split second is an eternity in a gunfight.

Hmm I always thought the safety of an empty chamber won over the time needed to chamber. When on patrol, they're not likely to need the gun in a hurry, are they? Shooting should also be a last resort.

Crazyhorse
07-09-2012, 12:48 AM
A poorly made (or worn) holster (http://www.itstactical.com/warcom/firearms/safety-warning-worn-leather-holsters-can-cause-accidental-discharges/) can actually pull the trigger if its moved the wrong way. With no more detail than the AP story provides there's no way to know what happened but the story as presented is not impossible.


“What the hell was that?!?” she said. It took me a half a second to realize that my gun had just gone off…on my hip…in its holster. My wife and I had just finished breakfast at our favorite café and got into the car.

Me being the passenger, I rotated my torso to the left to fasten my seatbelt like I always do. When I straightened again, my Glock 19 discharged, blowing a 9mm hole through my pants, underwear, the leather seat and bottom of the car’s door frame.

Alessan
07-09-2012, 02:40 AM
I can tell you from personal experience that a dropped M-16A1 can, in fact, discharge a bullet.

astro
07-09-2012, 03:04 AM
They story is obvious hogwash. One or both were probably drinking and horsing around and the weapon was not secured, then stupid shit happened.

Crazyhorse
07-09-2012, 04:06 AM
They story is obvious hogwash. One or both were probably drinking and horsing around and the weapon was not secured, then stupid shit happened.

There is no way to accurately determine the validity of the story with just the information provided. It is entirely possible depending on the details. This story (http://www.freep.com/article/20120708/NEWS01/120708029/Woman-hugs-off-duty-Detroit-police-officer-151-dies-after-his-gun-goes-off?odyssey=nav%7Chead) from the Detroit free press includes a few more details.

They report that he was the host of the party. He was off duty and permitted but not required to carry the gun. He was dancing with his wife when a woman he did not know 'hugged' him from behind and got shot. It doesn't spell this out in the story but presumably investigators asked witnesses including his wife what happened and got a consistent story. The gun was a .40 caliber semi-auto, holstered inside his waistband and under his shirt. It was probably, but not necessarily, positioned something like this (http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQY4R_9mr-kXVZiOAOXCI2BMA4WvfIHw82RJVjUlQ-EbIroJp9PxOBGLfle).

For all we know when she hugged him she could have put her thumb right inside the trigger guard and pulled the trigger herself. She could have rotated the holster far enough around to point up and back, or if she was much shorter than him a shot from his waist might hit her in the chest with only a a slight backward angle.

The story may or may not prove to be true after the investigation, but it is entirely possible with what information is being given so far.

Blake
07-09-2012, 04:18 AM
They story is obvious hogwash.

How can people make comments like this? Are you psychic perhaps?

Many times people have hugged me from behind and reached into my jacket while doing so, either deliberately or accidentally. It's such a routine occurrence that nobody would bother to even specifically remember it. I cant believe that large numbers of posters have apparently never even seen this occur, much less done it.

So this woman hugs a man from behind (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nNaX6Qz0QFI/Tiz1QLgnADI/AAAAAAAAAaA/HPRh8_KDXGs/s1600/Hug+from+Behind.jpg) or the side. (http://www.cafleurebon.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/hug.jpg) Her hand slips under his jacket and comes into contact with the holster. Without even thinking about it, most people will move their hand to try to work out what the object is.

Bang.

As for the claims that an accidental discharge couldn't have struck the heart, as others have noted, there are plenty of shoulder holsters that keep the firearm pointing at or near horizontal. Even with a significant downward angle of the barrel, it's quite possible for the victim be shot in the heart if the male is significantly taller than the female, which is hardly unusual. If you look at the first photograph linked to above, because of the height difference even a holster that projects the barrel downwards at 45o could result in the woman being struck in the heart. And the height difference between that couple isn't even unusual, much less extreme.

Many of the more popular handguns used by police have no independent safety catch. The only safety is built into the trigger, so that the weapon can only discharge if a finger is inside the trigger guard. These weapons are designed to be carried with a round in the chamber.

As far as i can see, claims that the story is "obvious" hogwash are the result of an utter lack of imagination or absence of experience of both experience of both life in general and firearms in particular.

Airman Doors, USAF
07-09-2012, 04:34 AM
I can tell you from personal experience that a dropped M-16A1 can, in fact, discharge a bullet.

An M-16 (and the aforementioned SKS) have free-floating firing pins that are somewhat prone to this. However, they are rifles. Handguns do not have free-floating firing pins and so for something like this to happen the guy either had the junkiest of junk (unlikely, as his life might have depended on it at some point) or he was carrying it in an unsafe manner.

I still can't figure out how she came from behind, hugged the guy, and took a shot in the chest. It had to be a shoulder rig, but how does the gun go off in a shoulder holster? Any holster that holds the gun horizontally will have a thumb break, and unless he jammed it into the trigger guard how does the trigger ever come into play?

Crazyhorse
07-09-2012, 04:50 AM
An M-16 (and the aforementioned SKS) have free-floating firing pins that are somewhat prone to this. However, they are rifles. Handguns do not have free-floating firing pins and so for something like this to happen the guy either had the junkiest of junk (unlikely, as his life might have depended on it at some point) or he was carrying it in an unsafe manner.

I still can't figure out how she came from behind, hugged the guy, and took a shot in the chest. It had to be a shoulder rig, but how does the gun go off in a shoulder holster? Any holster that holds the gun horizontally will have a thumb break, and unless he jammed it into the trigger guard how does the trigger ever come into play?

According to the article linked above it was a Smith and Wesson .40 caliber semi-auto and was holstered inside his waistband. If she was much shorter than him a gun at his waist might be pointed directly at her chest. It might have ricocheted off the ground and hit her on the way back up, the gun might have flipped completely out of his waistband and fired as it fell to the ground. Until the details emerge there is no way to know but the trigger could come into play if she put her thumb in it or it got snagged in the holster. Details like that will probably emerge during the investigation.


Goldpaugh, who spent several hours with the officer after the shooting, said the veteran beat patrolman was hosting a party at his home and was dancing with his wife when Miller came up behind him and tugged at his waist.


“And the gun went off,” Goldpaugh said. “It’s a fluke accidental shooting.”
The weapon, a department-issued, 40-caliber Smith & Wesson semiautomatic pistol, was in a holster worn inside the officer’s waistband and was covered by his shirt, Goldpaugh said.

Fubaya
07-09-2012, 06:10 AM
It said it hit her lung and heart but I haven't see mention of entry point. It may have hit lower and deflected upward.

Ludovic
07-09-2012, 07:01 AM
Was it the one that was used for fighting, or for fun?

Loach
07-09-2012, 08:44 AM
Hmm I always thought the safety of an empty chamber won over the time needed to chamber. When on patrol, they're not likely to need the gun in a hurry, are they? Shooting should also be a last resort.

Always always always have a round chambered. <checking> Yep there it is. And safeties kill thank god I have a Glock.

According to the article linked above it was a Smith and Wesson .40 caliber semi-auto and was holstered inside his waistband. If she was much shorter than him a gun at his waist might be pointed directly at her chest. It might have ricocheted off the ground and hit her on the way back up, the gun might have flipped completely out of his waistband and fired as it fell to the ground. Until the details emerge there is no way to know but the trigger could come into play if she put her thumb in it or it got snagged in the holster. Details like that will probably emerge during the investigation.

If it is a Smith .40 like we used to carry I have no idea if they are prone to discharge without pulling the trigger. Never saw that happen. I do know they were pieces of shit that jammed a lot. Also had a ton of light hits from the firing pin and stove pipes. I'm glad we got rid of them.

Tom Tildrum
07-09-2012, 09:11 AM
According to the article linked above it was a Smith and Wesson .40 caliber semi-auto and was holstered inside his waistband.

Actually in a holster, though, or just jammed into the waistband of his pants? If the latter, I could imagine the butt of the gun slipping down his, well, butt until the nose was pointing up. How the trigger gets pulled in that instance is less clear. Maybe if he feels it slipping and reaches around to grab it....

Scumpup
07-09-2012, 09:40 AM
Somebody pulled the trigger. There was either grab-assing involving the gun or some severe negligence in how it was holstered. Despite the wails of people who have fucked up, guns, especially modern handguns, don't just go off. The polymer framed Smith .40's use a partially tensioned striker that requires the trigger to be pulled to cock and release it. If it was one of the older 3rd generation metal framed guns that used a hammer and firing pin, the trigger still had to have been pulled to release the hammer even if he had foolishly been carrying it with the hammer cocked. Smith and Wesson, like all the first tier makers, produce handguns with lockwork designed to prevent unintentional firing. Most importantly, the trigger must be depressed for the gun to fire. Even if some bit inside breaks while the gun is holster the striker or firing pin doesn't reach the primer.

ducati
07-09-2012, 09:48 AM
I've been carrying a concealed weapon for over 25 years. Daily. Everywhere.
Different guns, different holsters, different carries. Moreso, I've known people that entire time who have done the same. I've never had an AD. They've never had an AD.

I've had a gun jump out of a holster once while running after someone, but it didn't fire. I've been hugged, tackled, tickled, shoved, and survived a couple of gun-grab attempts, but my gun never fired unintentionally.

I feel terrible for this woman and her family, but we're not getting the whole story here. I think we are going to hear a lot more about this, especially with the mother's comments.

Gun folks know that guns don't just go off. Somehow, some way, the trigger must be manipulated or pulled. Maybe the holster did it, as shown in the above article, but we need more information.

My current vote is gun mishandling, but who knows?

Also in the news today - another woman who doesn't believe the cops about her daughter's gun death...

Woman getting ride from cop grabs his gun and kills herself
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/06/woman-shoots-herself-with-cop-own-gun/?intcmp=obinsite#ixzz208WX1kFN

What the hell? Yeah, I know your guard is down for a 100 girl, but this cop is on duty, presumably with a level 2 or 3 retention holster. I don't think I'm spilling company secrets when I tell you that you don't just pull a cop's gun from its holster, despite what Hollywood wants you to believe. There are certain manipulations, actions, and more that with training, offers the officer instant access, but denies it to the un-initiated.

Even if she surprised him, it still would take a moment - I think - for her to fiddle the gun loose, and he should have - I think - had time to react and stop her.

It's certainly a strange situation, and like the OP, one that needs more information for a satisfactory answer.

Bear_Nenno
07-09-2012, 09:52 AM
Detroit Police officers are issued the M&P40. This pistol may be purchased with an optional safety, but I believe the department did not purchase that variant. The M&P is similar to a Glock.

FWIW, Detroit police are REQUIRED to carry their firearm loaded, with a round in the chamber, even off duty.
"2. All semi-automatic pistols carried by members, on or off-duty, shall be carried with a chambered round and a fully loaded magazine. Additional magazines, when carried, shall also be fully loaded."
https://www.detroitmi.gov/Portals/0/docs/police/DPD%20Civil%20Rights/PENDING_304.1_Firearms.pdf

ducati
07-09-2012, 09:56 AM
Thanks, Bear. I was just about to look up their issue weapon.

Seems to make it more clear that someone pulled that trigger.

Maybe.

Bear_Nenno
07-09-2012, 10:01 AM
I also notice that they are required to carry in an approved holster, at their waist, on their firing side. They are expressly forbidden from wearing shoulder holsters.

They are also forbidden from carrying if their BAC is above .02. Hopefully he wasn't drinking at the party...

Loach
07-09-2012, 11:02 AM
I remember seeing a demonstration of an old Japanese pistol from WWII. It could be fired by pushing on the sear pin. I don't know of any modern pistols that have a defect like that.

Scumpup
07-09-2012, 11:10 AM
I remember seeing a demonstration of an old Japanese pistol from WWII. It could be fired by pushing on the sear pin. I don't know of any modern pistols that have a defect like that.

Type 94 pistol. Pressure on the exposed trigger bar would fire it.

Skald the Rhymer
07-09-2012, 11:14 AM
Do off duty officers carry loaded weapons?

Well, there's no point in carrying an unloaded weapon. Unless it's a knife, I mean.

GiantRat
07-09-2012, 12:10 PM
Some depts. require their officers to carry when off-duty. Others allow it but it's the officer's choice.

Generally speaking, Federal agents are required to be armed at pretty much all times (y'know.... unless they're out drinking). They must also carry while on aircraft. It can be VERY inconvenient (especially for the ladies who sometimes wear skimpy clothes in the summer....

Ahhhh.... ladies in skimpy clothes... with guns.... in the summer....

BRB - give me 5 minutes.

Taomist
07-09-2012, 01:11 PM
Anyone else envisioning the wife and cop slow-dancing, and the wife seeing the 25 year old coming up to hug her husband from behind?
"Oh no you don't, missy!"

Kinda doubt it, but sounds like some investigative show's next plot.

Merneith
07-09-2012, 01:39 PM
I also notice that they are required to carry in an approved holster, at their waist, on their firing side. They are expressly forbidden from wearing shoulder holsters.

They are also forbidden from carrying if their BAC is above .02. Hopefully he wasn't drinking at the party...

According to this article, it sounds like the officer was clearly breaking that requirement.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20120709/us-fatal-hug/

Adaisha Miller was celebrating what would have been her 25th birthday Monday. Chief Ralph Godbee called her death a tragic, "unfathomable" accident.

"We are profoundly sad at their loss," he said, referring to Miller's family.

Godbee said the gun was in a waist holster made of soft material, which would have allowed the trigger to be activated. He said there's no evidence the officer fired the gun, and he believes the gun discharged after Miller hugged the officer from behind early Sunday during a party at the officer's home.

"There was some manipulation along the officer's waistline (that) he did not control," Godbee told reporters.

I don't think "unfathomable" is really the word Chief Godbee is looking for, here.

aceplace57
07-09-2012, 02:11 PM
Guns go off unexpectedly all the time. I've read many accounts over the years of guns in waistbands going off and shooting the victim in the groin or leg.

If this lady reached in for a hug and pulled strongly then of course the gun could go off. We don't know exactly where her hands were or how they brushed up against the holstered gun. Typically the person wearing the gun gets hit, but in this case it was the person behind him.

It was just a bizarre freak accident. It is a tragic accident, but stuff like this happens.

ducati
07-09-2012, 03:10 PM
Guns go off unexpectedly all the time. I've read many accounts over the years of guns in waistbands going off and shooting the victim in the groin or leg.

If this lady reached in for a hug and pulled strongly then of course the gun could go off. We don't know exactly where her hands were or how they brushed up against the holstered gun. Typically the person wearing the gun gets hit, but in this case it was the person behind him.

It was just a bizarre freak accident. It is a tragic accident, but stuff like this happens.

You've never actually seen a gun, have you? It's OK. We're not judging.

Now, it may be a true statement that guns sometimes go off unexpectedly, but they do not do so without the trigger being pulled - intentionally or unintentionally. The officer's issued weapon has a trigger pull of either 6.5 or 7 pounds.

Something pulled that trigger, and it wasn't a hug.



If this lady reached in for a hug and pulled strongly then of course the gun could go off.

No, it couldn't. Guns aren't designed or built where some slight, ambiguous pressure on the holster just sets them off.

No, either someone was playing/demonstrating with the gun, or it got knocked loose from its holster and the trigger was pulled in the attempt to regain control of the gun.

The gun did not just "go off". This is actually the only fact of this case that we know for sure.

I'm all ears for the rest










of the story... [/PH]

Moonlitherial
07-09-2012, 03:25 PM
I also notice that they are required to carry in an approved holster, at their waist, on their firing side. They are expressly forbidden from wearing shoulder holsters.

They are also forbidden from carrying if their BAC is above .02. Hopefully he wasn't drinking at the party...

According to this article, it sounds like the officer was clearly breaking that requirement.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20120709/us-fatal-hug/




Nothing in the article says that he was drinking and the only statements about the gun and holster were:

Police Chief Ralph Godbee told reporters Monday that Miller was dancing with the officer and touching his waist from behind when his holstered handgun fired, striking Miller in the chest.

Godbee says the gun was in a waist holster made of soft material. He says there is no evidence the officer fired the weapon, but he stopped short of saying Miller may have accidentally pulled the trigger.

Which part of those requirements was he clearly breaking?

Scumpup
07-09-2012, 03:34 PM
You've never actually seen a gun, have you? It's OK. We're not judging.

Now, it may be a true statement that guns sometimes go off unexpectedly, but they do not do so without the trigger being pulled - intentionally or unintentionally. The officer's issued weapon has a trigger pull of either 6.5 or 7 pounds.

Something pulled that trigger, and it wasn't a hug.



No, it couldn't. Guns aren't designed or built where some slight, ambiguous pressure on the holster just sets them off.

No, either someone was playing/demonstrating with the gun, or it got knocked loose from its holster and the trigger was pulled in the attempt to regain control of the gun.

The gun did not just "go off". This is actually the only fact of this case that we know for sure.

I'm all ears for the rest










of the story... [/PH] Right now, based on what little we know, my money is on the cop having the gun in a cheap nylon or suede holster. What with the dancing and the sweating and the drinking and the hugging, the gun unsurprisingly fell out. If he's fat and paired his cheap holster with a cheap, flimsy belt, a roll of flab is enough to have dislodged the gun just from normal movement. Anyway, I think the gun fell and somebody tried to catch it, resulting in the trigger being depressed and the gun firing at an unusual angle. Folks should be taught from an early age that if a gun or knife falls, you let it fall. Trying to catch them increases the chances of injury.

Nunzio Tavulari
07-09-2012, 05:43 PM
What disturbs me most about this story is how little time had passed before this became a campaign to sue the officer, city and likely the gun manufacturer and holster maker. All of the statements I've read include a statement by the mother that this never should have happened and someone is responsible. I see it as a freak accident that bears looking into even though the circumstances are unlikely to be replicated or have such dire results.

The modern judicial system being what it is, the case will settle out of court.

Merneith
07-09-2012, 06:07 PM
Nothing in the article says that he was drinking

Oh, right. I should have snipped out the part where Bear_Nenno mentions drinking. I wasn't talking about that. I have no idea if the guy was drinking or not.


and the only statements about the gun and holster were:

Police Chief Ralph Godbee told reporters Monday that Miller was dancing with the officer and touching his waist from behind when his holstered handgun fired, striking Miller in the chest.

Godbee says the gun was in a waist holster made of soft material. He says there is no evidence the officer fired the weapon, but he stopped short of saying Miller may have accidentally pulled the trigger.

Which part of those requirements was he clearly breaking?


The part I was claiming that the officer seems to have broken regulations is that the chief claimed the gun was in a soft material holster and that the woman set the gun off merely by touching the officer around the waist.

I was looking at the regulations posted earlier in the thread. (https://www.detroitmi.gov/Portals/0/docs/police/DPD%20Civil%20Rights/PENDING_304.1_Firearms.pdf)

Specifically, I was looking at here:304.1- 10.2 Uniform (On-Duty)

1. Members shall carry their DPD issued or approved primary sidearm holstered in a
DPD issued or approved holster, worn in accordance with DPD uniform standards.

2. Secondary sidearms must be carried holstered and concealed in such a manner
that allows for no unusual bulges, protrusions or exposure.

304.1- 10.3 Civilian Attire (On-Duty and Off-Duty)

1. All members shall carry their DPD issued or approved sidearm holstered, on their
strong hand side, unless otherwise authorized in writing by the member’s
Commanding Officer. The written authorization shall be retained in the member’s
command personnel file and shall be effective until the member is transferred to
another command or notified by the member’s commanding officer that such
authorization has been revoked.

Admittedly, I was working on the assumption that the department wouldn't have approved a flimsy pistol-cozy of a holster that would allow a gun to be triggered while it was inside. Also, on reread - perhaps civilians don't have to get permission from the department to keep their department-issued weapons in department-approved holsters? So I'm willing to retract the "clearly" while stating that perhaps the Detroit PD needs to take a long, hard, look at their holster-approval procedures.



I should also say - it appears that the article has been updated since I posted that link earlier this afternoon. The portion I quoted with Godbee's remarks isn't there anymore.

However, the new version of the article now contains this:
Godbee said the officer's gun had a safety mechanism built into the trigger.

The Smith & Wesson M&P primarily was designed for police and military use. It does not have a safety switch, but the trigger has to be pulled back completely for the gun to fire, certified firearms instructor Rick Ector said.

Ector said that if properly holstered, the gun cannot be fired accidentally.

But Godbee said Parrish's waist holster was made of a soft material, and it would be possible for the trigger to be pulled while the gun was in it. He said the barrel direction typically would have been pointing down while holstered.

The gun's angle also is at question, according to David Balash, a former Michigan State Police firearms examiner.

"What's going to be very important here is the angle of the entry of the wound to the victim (and) if there is in fact any gunpowder residue," Balash said. "I'm having a great deal of difficulty understanding how a weapon that's pointed at the ground can be turned literally 110 degrees minimum to be in an upward position to strike someone."

The longer this story sits, the worse it smells.

Here's a direct link to this version of the article
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/09/adaisha-miller-detroit-shot-hug-cop_n_1659689.html

picunurse
07-09-2012, 07:42 PM
This (http://xfinity.comcast.net/articles/news-national/20120708/US.Fatal.Hug/) article says the holster was a neoprene-like material.

But Godbee said Parrish's waist holster was made of a soft, neoprene-type material, and it would be possible for the trigger to be pulled while the gun was in it.

They also quote a firearms expert: David Balash, a former Michigan State Police firearms examiner, said the investigation also should look at the gun's angle given that Miller was shot in the chest.

"What's going to be very important here is the angle of the entry of the wound to the victim (and) if there is in fact any gunpowder residue," Balash said. "I'm having a great deal of difficulty understanding how a weapon that's pointed at the ground can be turned literally 110 degrees minimum to be in an upward position to strike someone."

It appears to me that there's more here than meets the eye.

astro
07-09-2012, 08:39 PM
Guns go off unexpectedly all the time. I've read many accounts over the years of guns in waistbands going off and shooting the victim in the groin or leg.

If this lady reached in for a hug and pulled strongly then of course the gun could go off. We don't know exactly where her hands were or how they brushed up against the holstered gun. Typically the person wearing the gun gets hit, but in this case it was the person behind him.

It was just a bizarre freak accident. It is a tragic accident, but stuff like this happens.

Guns that fire when they "fall" out of belts and waistbands is not mainly due to impact, but people grabbing to catch the gun and pulling the trigger in the grab motion. That's how the Plaxico Burress scenario went down. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plaxico_Burress)

Crafter_Man
07-10-2012, 10:06 AM
The simplest explanation is that Ms. Miller pulled the gun from the holster when she wrapped her arms around the officer from behind, either accidently or intentionally. As soon as the gun was removed the holster, one of her fingers entered the trigger guard while (at the same time) the muzzle swung 90 degrees toward her.

In other words, if the gun was on the officer's right hip, the muzzle was pointing down (6 o'clock position) while in the holster, and the gun swung 90 degrees CW (to the 9 o'clock position) as Ms. Miller removed it from the holster. The gun pivoted on her finger that was within the trigger guard.

At least that's my theory.

Diceman
07-10-2012, 11:17 AM
It appears to me that there's more here than meets the eye.

There very well might be. The Detroit Police Department does its share of turning a blind eye to police misconduct. I'm almost prepared to bet that the cop was drinking, and did something stupid with the gun, and this was conveniently ommitted from the official reports.

Loach
07-10-2012, 11:49 AM
There very well might be. The Detroit Police Department does its share of turning a blind eye to police misconduct. I'm almost prepared to bet that the cop was drinking, and did something stupid with the gun, and this was conveniently ommitted from the official reports.

Unless something different comes out I tend to not believe this just due to the fact that the victim's mother does not seem to be arguing about the official reports. It was apparently a party. I'm assuming that means there were more than 3 people there. Friends and family of the victim. No one is screaming cover-up.

Fubaya
07-10-2012, 06:09 PM
A new story says a police official familiar with the investigation says she was on her knees doing "some type of 'exotic dance'" and tugging at his waist. The mother says nonsense, eyewitnesses told the family that they were side-by-side and hugged when the gun went off. Maybe the people were embarrassed to tell her about the "exotic dance" or maybe the "official familiar with the investigation" is full of shit.

Admittedly, I was working on the assumption that the department wouldn't have approved a flimsy pistol-cozy of a holster that would allow a gun to be triggered while it was inside.

Is actually doesn't say the holster has to be approved for plainclothes or off duty cops. On duty, it says "in a DPD issued or approved holster." Off duty it says "carry their DPD issued or approved sidearm holstered." The "issued or approved" bit pertains to the firearm, not the holster. So any holster will apparently do for off duty cops.

BigT
07-11-2012, 04:56 AM
Only in our society would the fact that the other person was doing something sexual be a problem worth covering up.

Bullitt
07-14-2012, 04:09 AM
Is actually doesn't say the holster has to be approved for plainclothes or off duty cops. On duty, it says "in a DPD issued or approved holster." Off duty it says "carry their DPD issued or approved sidearm holstered." The "issued or approved" bit pertains to the firearm, not the holster. So any holster will apparently do for off duty cops.

This might explain the question I had, about if a lightweight (and thin) neoprene holster could ever be approved by any PD?

anson2995
07-15-2012, 09:22 AM
The story keeps changing, and it keeps getting more fishy: (http://www.freep.com/article/20120710/NEWS01/120710037/Police-officer-gun-holstered-Adaisha-Miller)

Adaisha Miller was on her knees while dancing behind an off-duty Detroit police officer early Sunday when his holstered gun fired, striking her in the chest, a police official familiar with the investigation told the Free Press today.

The official said that explains how Miller was shot in the chest while dancing behind Officer Isaac Parrish during a fish fry early Sunday at his home on Archdale.

The official said the angle of the gunshot is possible because Miller was not standing and described it as some type of "exotic dance" where Miller, 24, was tugging at Parrish’s waist.

Miller’s family members strongly disputed that account today.

FoieGrasIsEvil
07-15-2012, 09:50 AM
Not what I assumed this thread was about.

"THIS is your weapon, THIS is your gun. THIS is for killing, THIS is for fun!"

RickJay
07-15-2012, 10:39 AM
The standard DPD weapon is the Smith & Wesson M&P, which replaced the Glock-22 in about 2005. So depending on when this officer join the force and was issued his weapon it's likely one or the other.

I'm having a lot of trouble understanding how this could have happened. Both weapons are famously safe and designed specifically for thing like this to not happen. If the weapon was holstered and safetied I really can't see how this took place. Froget the angle (the bullet could be ricocheted off the floor) doesn't it seem supremely unlikely that she could have removed the safety AND fired the gun accidentally?

running coach
07-15-2012, 10:57 AM
The standard DPD weapon is the Smith & Wesson M&P, which replaced the Glock-22 in about 2005. So depending on when this officer join the force and was issued his weapon it's likely one or the other.

I'm having a lot of trouble understanding how this could have happened. Both weapons are famously safe and designed specifically for thing like this to not happen. If the weapon was holstered and safetied I really can't see how this took place. Froget the angle (the bullet could be ricocheted off the floor) doesn't it seem supremely unlikely that she could have removed the safety AND fired the gun accidentally?

Neither gun has an external thumb safety. Both have internal firing pin safeties that disengage when the trigger is pulled. Both guns have a secondary lever in the middle of the trigger that blocks the pull unless a finger(or something) is on the trigger doing the pulling.

Earl Snake-Hips Tucker
07-15-2012, 01:26 PM
I wonder if they're misspelling her name, and it's really "A-a."

AaronX
07-15-2012, 08:04 PM
On her knees, exotic dance, tugging at his waist. I'm just going to speculate that his wife caught her doing a sexual act and shot her.

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