Reporting Andrea Menniti
LODI (CBS13) — A Lodi Police SWAT officer had a Glock 35 with a flashlight in his thigh holster at a children’s reading event when a boy managed to pull the trigger and shoot the officer.
“It doesn’t have an external safety or anything like that,” said Lt. Sierra Brucia with the department. “The gun functioned how it was supposed to. When the trigger was pulled, the gun went off.”
The officer was showing off the department’s SWAT truck, vest and other gear at a children’s event called Reading Roundup on Aug. 24.
“A small child, witnesses tell us was 6 to 8 years old, was able to walk up to the officer and was able to pull the trigger.”
The bullet hit the officer’s leg. He was taken to the hospital for a minor injury and released.
The department is investigating the shooting to see if protocols or procedures need to be changed to prevent the same thing from happening again.
Officers want to find the child and his parents to piece together what went wrong.
“Hopefully, speaking to the child and the child’s parents to find out how they were able to get access to the officer’s gun, what the child’s intent may have been—we don’t know if it was accidental or unintentional.”
Police say because the gun was in a holster to accommodate the attached flashlight, the trigger was more accessible.
The officer has been on the SWAT team for about 5 years and he is back on duty.