Cop shoots 5 year old stepson at police range while "cleaning" his Glock

Cop shoots 5 year old stepson at police range while "cleaning" his Glock

This is a discussion on Cop shoots 5 year old stepson at police range while "cleaning" his Glock within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Link 01/11/08 VPD officers suspended after accidental shooting The Venice Police Department has suspended two of its veteran officers without pay over the accidental shooting ...

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Thread: Cop shoots 5 year old stepson at police range while "cleaning" his Glock

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Chooie's Avatar
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    Angry Cop shoots 5 year old stepson at police range while "cleaning" his Glock

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    01/11/08

    VPD officers suspended after accidental shooting

    The Venice Police Department has suspended two of its veteran officers without pay over the accidental shooting of a 5-year-old boy.

    The suspensions came following a lengthy Internal Affairs investigation into a shooting incident at the police range. The victim is the stepson of Officer Billy Masters, whose gun discharged as he was cleaning it.

    "Officer Billy Masters was suspended for 160 hours without pay (one month) and Sgt. Joe Whitehead was suspended for two weeks," Police Chief Julie Williams said. "The way I feel about it is, corrections have been made and now we move on."

    Serious mistakes

    Williams, in a telephone interview, reiterated what she stated in the nearly 100-page IA report.

    "Serious mistakes were made by each of them," she said. "We sustain five charges against Masters and four against Sgt. Whitehead."

    Whitehead, as VPD range master, was held accountable for not ensuring that proper range protocol and firearms safety procedures were followed.

    Among the five sustained claims against Masters was this one stated by Williams in the report:

    "It is my conclusion that Officer Masters acted carelessly without regard to those around him when he accidentally shot another person.

    "This incident could have been prevented if Officer Masters would have followed proper training procedures and gun safety protocol. Officer Masters did not follow basic rules of firearm safety posted in the training facility observable from the area where the shooting took place."

    According to police documents, Masters was cleaning his Glock 23 semi-automatic .40 caliber duty pistol at the police shooting range Nov. 21. His wife and 5-year-old stepson came to watch him shoot.

    Masters was disassembling the weapon (a normal procedure prior to cleaning) and didn't realize he still had a round in the chamber, the report stated. The gun accidentally discharged.

    The bullet hit the boy in the left hip area. He was airlifted to All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg. He was released the next day.

    Disciplined over affair

    Five years ago, Masters was involved in an affair with another VPD officer's wife. Both officers are still with the department. Masters was disciplined by then-Chief Jim Hanks.

    Hanks originally recommended that Masters, who had then been with the department 10 years, be suspended for five days without pay.

    The affair and the disciplinary action caused widespread dissension within the department. Many officers felt Hanks was too lenient with Masters.

    A VPD review board recommended that Masters, who also reportedly pulled a gun on the other officer over a matter not directly related to the affair, should have been suspended for 15 days without pay.

    Lie detector

    The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Venice Police Internal Affairs unit investigated the 2002 gun incident.

    The victim officer took an FDLE polygraph that proved inconclusive. An IA polygraph, however, showed he was telling the truth about Masters pulling a gun on him.

    The two officers had been best friends for 18 years.
    Now hold on there buddy... I thought that one of the reasons Glockophiles deride the XD was because you have to pull the trigger to disassemble it, compared to the Glock, where you just pull the tabs and move the slide off the frame... How about a disassembly method that requires you to open the slide and clear the chamber, or even better, NOT POINT THE BLOODY THING AT YOUR KID!?

    Stuff like this makes my head hurt.
    Last edited by Chooie; January 12th, 2008 at 12:18 AM. Reason: Un-Borked link


  2. #2
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    Rule #2 ....... rule #2 .......... that alone can avoid such occurrences ... even if all other rules are flouted.!!
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    Member Array mslaughtertx's Avatar
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    To be blunt, no matter what safeties that your firearm has....they can't help stupid!

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    Wow. He should have been fired with the first problem. Who allows family to hang out at a police range? It isnt play time! Jeese. So many stupid mistakes here...
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Violating basic safety rules may well end in tragedy.
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  6. #6
    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chooie View Post
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    Now hold on there buddy... I thought that one of the reasons Glockophiles deride the XD was because you have to pull the trigger to disassemble it, compared to the Glock, where you just pull the tabs and move the slide off the frame... How about a disassembly method that requires you to open the slide and clear the chamber, or even better, NOT POINT THE BLOODY THING AT YOUR KID!?

    Stuff like this makes my head hurt.
    I am a "Glockophile" and I can tell you, you are required to pull the trigger on the Glock during the disassembly process. This guy is an idiot and if he is the rangemaster at this police department, then that police department is very messed up. I wouldn't feel safe living in a town protected by a department where the rangemaster is a moron.
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  7. #7
    Member Array mslaughtertx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SIXTO View Post
    Wow. He should have been fired with the first problem. Who allows family to hang out at a police range? It isnt play time! Jeese. So many stupid mistakes here...
    THat is another valid point. Even the smallest Dept. I have worked for says no visitors at the firing line without proper permission from the RO

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    Distinguished Member Array morintp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TN_Mike View Post
    I am a "Glockophile" and I can tell you, you are required to pull the trigger on the Glock during the disassembly process. This guy is an idiot and if he is the rangemaster at this police department, then that police department is very messed up. I wouldn't feel safe living in a town protected by a department where the rangemaster is a moron.
    I think the rangemaster mentioned (Whitehead) was only suspended because he didn't ensure proper protocol was followed. He was just too trusting that a longtime officer would follow proper procedure. The idiot was Masters.

    The first thing I do whenever I clean my gun is pop the magazine out and lock the slide back. Even once I have the chambered round in my hand, I still do a visual inspection.

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array Chooie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TN_Mike View Post
    I am a "Glockophile" and I can tell you, you are required to pull the trigger on the Glock during the disassembly process.
    All the more reason he should have done a systems check before disassembly. My mistake in just repeating the argument I've heard; it's been a while since I've actually taken down a Glock.

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by morintp View Post
    I think the rangemaster mentioned (Whitehead) was only suspended because he didn't ensure proper protocol was followed. He was just too trusting that a longtime officer would follow proper procedure. The idiot was Masters.

    The first thing I do whenever I clean my gun is pop the magazine out and lock the slide back. Even once I have the chambered round in my hand, I still do a visual inspection.
    They are both idiots.
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  11. #11
    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    darn it! This is NOT an accidental discharge! It is a NEGLIGENT discharge. Stupid media!

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Agreed, it is an ND.
    And yes to break down a Glock a pull of the trigger is required.

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  13. #13
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    My niece's husband is a LEO in Venice...I'm sure I will hear about this...but if I do, I know I can't share the info...sad day for all concerned...expecially the boy.
    I can't imagine, even being held at fault, how a father would feel about causing such harm to a step-son...
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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    I'm speechless.

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    Ex Member Array FN1910's Avatar
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    I don't care if it is a Glock, XD or anything else if you aren't sure it isn't loaded then it doesn't need cleaning. Why are people is such a hurry to clean their gun that they can't even check to see it is unloaded? I have heard all the arguments about having to pull the trigger to remove the slide and if you are worried about that you don't need to be handling a gun. It takes 10 seconds to verify that there is no round in the chamber and if you can't do that then stay home and watch porn or something but stay away from guns, you don't deserve to be covered by 2A.

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