You don’t read a single passively constructed negligent discharge story for months and then BLAM! (So to speak.) They appear daily. Today’s example hails from azfamily.com. “Police said a man accidentally shot himself in the leg while at a Wal-Mart store in Phoenix on Saturday. Phoenix police spokesman Officer James Holmes said the man had a gun on his hip and it went off . . . Christa Allejandro was checking out at the store near 16th Avenue and Bethany Home Road when she heard a loud bang . . .

“It sounded like a balloon,” she said. “We were in the aisle paying for our stuff and then the next thing you know, a couple of aisles down from me, we hear a gunshot and we see a man cover his belly.”

How do you shoot yourself in the belly when your gun goes of (all on its own) on your hip? No se. On the other hand, Ms. Allejandro may have ingested some magic mushrooms before the incident.

The whole ordeal caused confusion, shoppers to panic, and the store to be evacuated.

“I was tripping. I was trying to just get out of the store,” Allejandro said.

No one else was hurt.

Except the guy who belly shot himself from the hip. [h/t SS]

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80 Responses to Passively Constructed Negligent Discharge Story of the Day: Wal-Mart Edition

    • Who keeps a pistol chambered while shopping? I could see it perhaps if having to traverse a questionable neighborhood after dark and just flipping the safety off when needed, but this was just plain s-t-u-p-i-d. And how does someone shoot themselves in the leg and abdomen at the same time unless in yoga class?

      • It must be nice to know ahead of time when you may encounter a situation and know to chamber a round and flip off your safety.

        If you think something can only happen in certain neighborhoods, you’re not paying attention. Also, avoid those neighborhoods.

        • I carry always not because I go places trouble is likely, but because trouble has a habit of not staying in its assigned zone.

      • When teaching people how to shoot, one of the most common mistakes I see (and criticize heavily for) is having a finger in the trigger guard while racking the slide. I’d much rather have someone keep a round in the chamber than perform a slide rack under a stressful situation and squeeze one off in the process.

        Your finger has a home, and it’s not on the trigger… if people made a habit of this we’d significantly reduce the number of negligent discharges. Heck, I find that I don’t even pick up tools like drills without pointing my finger forward and keeping it away from the trigger/button/etc.

        That being said, I don’t flip the safety off on the few weapons I own that possess such useless features, since I’d rather use my finger to keep the gun safe than trust a mechanical device to keep it safe for me. Having a safety teaches bad habits like “it’s ok to sweep the dog while taking off your weapon, it’s on safety right?” All my firearms are loaded and off-safety, even when they’re not… Best to teach your children that as well…

        • Wait, wait, wait!!! The story is this guy is in the damn checkout line! Whether he had his finger in the trigger guard while racking the slide is not a player here, why was he racking the slide? Why was he even touching the damn gun? We are not hearing what happened here. Maybe it just jumped up and pointed at his belly, then “went off”??

      • Who carries a pistol chambered while shopping?

        The correct answer should be anybody who carries a pistol.

        Similarly, who thinks it’s weird to carry a pistol chambered while shopping?

        An idiot.

      • First off, it was at WalMart. WalMart is one step above Dollar General in its clientele but it is host to the bottom 10% of society. Second, when shopping, you are in public, among strangers, carrying cash. If you need to carry anywhere with a loaded chamber, this would be the time and place. So, to answer your question…everybody should.

      • Not having the precognition ability as you seem to have I do not know when trouble may come my way so I always carry with a round in the chamber, safety on.

      • Why would you even carry a gun? Just carry the bullets and if you ever need the gun, go home and get it. Also, you win for the dumbest comment of 2014.

    • I wonder if it was appendix carry and they were looking for a polite way of saying “self-inflicted vasectomy.”

    • You mean, was the gun owner perchance disobeying the rules of safety and thereby inviting a negligent discharge?

      Good grief. Even pro-gun people blame the inanimate objects for their owners’ (in)actions.

      • We don’t blame the gun, we just point out that it makes being stupid easier, just like it makes killing someone easier, but the user is still responsible in both cases.

        • That’s weak. Anyone stupid with a gun is going to be stupid no matter the gun. The threshold has already been crossed at that point, such that the make and model of the gun itself is irrelevant. It’s like saying “a little bit pregnant” or arguing over who’s the smartest Stooge. When one disobeys the four safety rules, then he’s signed his own death warrant. Quibbling over the make and model of the gun is like arguing over whether to use a ball point or felt tip pen to sign it.

          Even mentioning something that intrinsically irrelevant works to redirect responsibility, at least in part, toward that irrelevant factor.

          If someone is even going to bother singling out Glocks, to the exclusion of all the other negligent discharges involving all the other makes and models out there, then they should at least give a quick nod to the benefits of the Glock design. Consistent trigger weight and no external, manual safety are surely features which have contributed to Glocks having been deployed to lifesaving effect many times.

        • The more safety mechanisms a gun has, the less likely it is to go off when handled by an idiot.

        • Well, the Glock has three safety mechanisms, two more than a typical pistol. Yet, this jackwagon still managed to shoot himself (if he had a Glock), or still refused to avail himself of a firearm such as a Glock with redundant safety features (if he didn’t have a Glock). Kind of damned if you do, damned if you don’t, thing from a do-gooder, save the idiots from themselves perspective, huh?

          So much for your fanciful “If only we over-engineered guns with even more built-in safety features and geared the entire industry toward the lowest common denominator of the customer base, then everyone would be safe and sound” theory. Oh well.

        • Looks like someone drank the “Safe Action” Kool-Aid.
          Most modern pistols have some form of a firing pin block or transfer bar as well. Glock did not invent that. Their “drop” safety is a required part of the design since the trigger bar would not be able to connect without it. It is not a “safety”.

          And the trigger block “safety”…means you can’t pull the trigger unless you’re actually pulling the trigger. Dafuq kinda safety is that?? And who lets them get away with calling that a “safety”?

          The Glock, is a single-action pistol that, for the sake of not having an external safety, wanted to be a double-action but didn’t quite make it. It’s a fine pistol, and I don’t have any misgivings about carrying one, but we’ve got to drop this BS about them being any safer than anyone else’s design just because Glock’s marketing says so.

        • Wrong, The Glock has no safety because it is deactivated by the same motion that causes the gun to fire. For a safety to be an actual safety device must be independent of the mechanism that fires the gun. Anybody who thinks the he is the best safety is fooling himself. The human element is the weakest link in the safety chain. The XD series with its grip safety is a far safer pistol than a Glock. To beat another dead horse a 1911 with the manual safety disengaged is much safer than a Glock.

          The designer of the Glock safety system comes from the same engineering school that routed the “redundant” hydraulic lines on the DC-10 through the same place where a failure of the tail mounted engine (#2) would take out both lines. They found this out when the turbine self-destructed on the #2 engine and took out all the hydraulics. I think that was plane the crash-landed in Sioux City Iowa in 1989

        • “The more safety mechanisms a gun has, the less likely it is to go off when handled by an idiot.”
          Faith in that statement is a dangerous mindset. You might as well say “Unloaded guns are less likely to fire when handled by an idiot”. Anyone can think a gun is loaded when it is not or unloaded when loaded. Anyone can think a safety is on when off and vise versa. You still have to verify every condition with every gun with safeties or not. And every gun, with or without safeties, loaded or not, should not have anything contact the trigger. Relying on safeties may cause carelessness. Carelessness is negligence.

        • Hey, take it from a pilot, that DC-10 crash landing was one of the finest flying feats ever, period, bar none. They should have all died, very possibly with hundreds on the ground dying as well. Absolutely astonishing, if you can find an expanded writeup of the story, make certain you empty your bowels and bladder before reading, or you will make a mess. And I imagine people can still find the video of the crash itself, but if you know what was going on in the cockpit as it approaches the runway, while you watch it … well, there has ever been a movie as thrilling, regardless of already knowing how it came out. Like finding a long lost video of the gunfight at the OK corral.

      • “GLOCK goes off randomly while secured in holster. In other news, physics stopped working today.”

      • Jonathan said, “Good grief. Even pro-gun people blame the inanimate objects for their owners’ (in)actions.”

        I was not / am not “blaming the inanimate object”; I was merely asking a question.

        There seem to have been several events where clothing parts (primarily drawstrings) have “triggered” a discharge. The most commonly reported such seem to involve Glocks. The problem seems to be that folks “naturally assume” that their Glock is “Condition 1” when, based on the nature of the Glock “safety system,” it is for all practical purposes Condition 0. It is, of course, the responsibility of the person carrying a Glock (or a firearm with a separate safety that is off) to know this.

        Personally, I would cut some slack for the first person to have had a blazer drawstring trigger his Glock. If the risk is unknown, failure to mitigate it is not negligence. It is pretty easy to assume (yes, I know what they say) that the trigger interlock could not be actuated by clothing. But, once you have inquiry notice that the risk exists, failure to mitigate becomes negligence.

        Since the possibility of discharging a Condition 0 firearm with clothing (if it’s trigger is not covered) is known; and, since the owner of a Glock should know his firearm is essentially Condition 0 if he has a round chambered, “ignorance” is not any sort of “defense” against the claim of negligence. I was merely curious if was another case of being “Cocked and Glocked”…

        Odds are, this fellow had gone to another level — with a firearm that had a safety which was not employed coupled with a trigger that was not covered…

        Of course, I am making a LOT of assumptions here. For all the story says, he may have been twirling it while waiting in line…

        We don’t have much for detail.

      • Ok three thoughts:

        —-“a pilot could inadvertently discharge the weapon by failing to ensure it is properly seated in the holster, securing the trigger lock and then pushing the weapon inward to secure the holster snap.

        The weapon also can be discharged if the pilot inserts the padlock hasp into the holster incorrectly, the report says.—

        1st: WTF? A holster, worn on the body + trigger lock + holster snap? That seems kinda redundant.

        2nd: All firearms could potentially be inadvertently discharged if they were not properly seated in the holster.

        3rd: — The incident is the only known gun discharge in the cockpit of a commercial airliner since the federal government began handing out the holsters in its armed program, known as Federal Flight Deck Officer.

        While the exact number of armed pilots is confidential, the TSA has said there are more armed pilots than Federal Air Marshals, a number it says is in the thousands.—-

        Thousands of armed pilots – 1 discharge from an idiot who didn’t properly handle his weapon…

        Statistical non-event.

        • Transportation Security Administration — which trains and equips the armed pilots Given that the TSA couldn’t find their own ass if had their thumbs in their bunghole, the morons came up with a “special” pilot holster? With a LOCK on it? perhaps a lanyard and Webley revolver to go in it.

          I’d like to see a photo of this holster.

          found possible photo http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2162246/posts

      • @Charles

        Here’s an idea: Don’t leave a pistol unattended where a child can get to it! Pretty advanced concept, I know.

        Here’s another one: keep your finger out of the trigger guard! I hope all that wasn’t too much to take in all at once.

  1. Let me guess, probably a Glock with that stupid blade safety that isn’t really a safety at all and of course a round in the chamber or it wouldn’t have went off. When stupid people handle guns improperly and don’t have the chamber empty and a stupid blade safety again which is no safety at all, something is bound to go wrong. Now of course since it doesn’t say in the article here what brand or type of handgun it was, I can only speculate that it was indeed a Glock or some other Glock like gun that has that stupid blade safety. Duh go figure, keep the chamber on those guns empty.

    • Bullshit. If you’re carrying properly (with a holster that covers the trigger guard) condition 1 is perfectly safe, and could save your life. How long does it take to chamber a round? Now, how long does it take to chamber a round when your adrenaline is pumping and your motor skills have shit themselves? Sure, it shouldn’t be more than about 2-3 seconds to go from “holstered with an empty chamber” to ” “Weapon drawn, on target, and ready to fire”, but that 2-3 seconds could mean the difference between walking away and lying in a pool of your own blood.

      You’re an idiot if you think NDs are inevitable by carrying condition 1.

      • Whats bullshit? the fact that blade safeties are dangerous, well look how many have shot themselves lately with you guesed it, Glocks. Look at all the publicity it’s getting from all the gun grabbers about guns not being safe. Rule 1 when it comes to having a gun without a reliable safety is ALWAYS assume the chamber is loaded but KEEP IT CLEAR until ready to fire. you cannot convince me that a gun without a manual safety is indeed safe, and I am growing tired of all you GLOCK nuts yammering how safe they are when people are getting shot on a regular basis by them. Either through op error or by a kid that wasn’t taught any better and decided to play with the neat toy gun they just got out of mom & dads sock drawer, that turned out to not be a toy!

        • I don’t blame Glock for the negligence of a user. I blame Glock for not putting a real safety on the gun to start with.

    • The blade safety is pretty useless. However even a DA without even the pretense of a trigger safety is perfectly safe, as long as the person keeps it in a proper holster. Either this idiot had the gun in an improper holster (such as loose in a pocket) or pulled it out of the holster. Either case was user error.
      At least he didn’t shoot somebody intelligent.

    • I’d pay $1,000 to anyone with a verifiable, legitimate video of a Glock “just going off”, when said Glock is just sitting there completely untouched, unmolested, unrigged, untampered with in any way whatsoever. This assumes the Glock is in reasonable working condition, hasn’t been altered, customized, or jacked with by anyone in any way not recommended or sanctioned by the owner’s manual, isn’t loaded with non-SAMMI ammo, and isn’t kept in an unintended environment.

      We can work out the official rules and stipulations if anyone’s serious about collecting, in advance of showing me your (literal) smoking gun video. I can tell you now, though, I’d sooner expect to pay out for Bigfoot footage than for anyone’s Glocks Gone Wild video.

      • I’m not saying it jumped off the table and shot someone. Somebody probably bought an old style holster which has the trigger exposed and put their finger on it when trying to adjust the holster at the store (for whatever reason), operator error for sure, but my argument still stands blade safeties are dangerous with one in the chamber, and no one can convince me otherwise. If it hasn’t got a manual safety, or has no safety at all, as in the case of the blade safety, then its dangerous, especially around careless adults and kids.

        • There is a firing pin block. A Glock will not fire unless the trigger is pulled. Period. Something got in the trigger guard and pulled the trigger due to not carrying in a proper holster and/or unsafe gun handling.

          It is scary that this has to keep being explained in a gun forum.

        • You don’t have to keep explaining it to me, I totally understand it. However, if you can simply “pull the trigger” and the gun goes off, the gun is NOT SAFE, especially with a round in the chamber.

        • Maybe you can explain what you mean by “blade safeties,” since we’re obviously not talking about knives, and it’s the first time I’ve heard that term. Some term you invented??

        • @Charles, May 22, 2014 at 00:13 :

          In Springfield XDs you “simply pull the trigger,” but it has the USA safety system (I’m not going to explain it, look it up on their site) that prevents the gun from firing unless you purposely pull the trigger straight back with a firm grip on the gun – it cannot fire if dropped, or on it’s own. With that system, my FINGER is my safety! You should never place your finger near the trigger unless you absolutely intend on pulling the trigger at that time. When grabbing a gun, you should always have your index finger extended STRAIGHT along the side, NO EXCEPTION. If people are too stupid to do that, then they shouldn’t own a gun, period.

          It is because I treat a gun like it’s always loaded, and know how to properly handle it, that it IS SAFE.

        • @Charles, May 22, 2014 at 00:13 :

          It is because people think that they are suddenly safe , and that they can “relax now that the safety is on,” that negligent discharges like the one above can happen.

        • Yes I understand that, but when you have a manual safety switch or button that has to be manually pushed to the OFF position BEFORE you can pull the trigger, it is then much safer for anyone using it or around it. This is why I like guns like the 1911. Anyone that just thinks their safety is on without actually checking it is stupid anyway, we have already established that 🙂

        • @Charles:

          Because I also had trouble finding the USA system (because it’s actually called the “USA Trigger system” not “USA Safety System”), I will post a link to the diagram that explains it:
          http://www.the-m-factor.com/html/thestandards.html

          the XD also comes with a grip safety that I was describing, which prevents the pistol from firing even if something pulls it back unless you have a firm hand around the grip.

        • OK thank you. Now that I like better than just the USA system because a lot of small kids would not be able to apply proper pressure to both the trigger and the Grip safety at the same time, some will but not the smallest ones that would normally be injured or killed by just the USA system alone or as I was calling it the blade safety because that is what I heard it called.
          I still prefer the 1911 manual safety, but the one on the XD is also good.

        • Oh man, that is friggin’ rich! If you can simply pull the trigger, the part of the firearm that is designed to discharge the firearm, and the firearm discharges, then the firearm is unsafe? Um, that’s not a flaw, that’s a feature. Pulling the trigger discharges the firearm: you call that firearm unsafe, I call that firearm reliable.

          Now, if your position were the opposite, that NOT pulling the trigger could still result in a discharge, such as via slam fire or lack of a transfer bar on an old fashioned revolver, then you’d have an argument. But even then, there’s no excuse for irresponsible behavior on the operator’s part.

        • Never mind Jon never mind, you seem stuck on acting like a friggin troll so I will just move on. My concerns for triggers like that which have no manual safety are valid I think. Too many kids have been shot with them already because people were not locking them up properly and the gun “just went off”.

        • Jon:

          Your description is correct but you are describing the operation of a grip safety which has been around since at least 1911. The purpose of the grip safety is make sure the only time the gun can fire is when you intend to fire it. It isn’t fool proof but you have to do two things wrong to have an ND rather than one thing. When I first got a 1911 I wanted to gain confidence in the grip safety aso I went to the range and gripped the pistol in such a way that I did not depress the grip safety and lo and behold the gun did not fire.

        • “Never mind Jon never mind, you seem stuck on acting like a friggin troll so I will just move on. ”

          Excuse me, what?! O.O Yeah, I think you better run along.

        • @tdiinva, May 22, 2014 at 07:32:

          “Your description is correct but you are describing the operation of a grip safety which has been around since at least 1911.”

          That may be true, but I mentioned an XD because unlike a 1911, it doesn’t have a safety switch and also has the USA Trigger System (quoted from SA: The Ultra Safety Assurance USA Trigger System™ guards against accidental discharge from dropping or bumping by locking the XD’s trigger in place until direct, rearward pressure is applied.)

          My point was that there was no need for the safety switch, and that’s why I chose the XD as an example.

        • There is a reason to have a safety switch. People just choose to overlook it. If you (meaning anyone) want to have an unsafe gun, that’s your business, I however chose to be safe with mine.

        • Jon:

          Newsflash! The 1911 also is drop safe. I can’t think of any modern gun that isn’t. You don’t need the little blade on the trigger to have a drop safe gun. The blade is a useless appendage since it is deactivated by pulling the trigger. It is not what makes the XD safer than a Glock. It is the grip safety accomplishes that.

  2. The story does start off in active voice with “Police said a man accidentally shot himself in the leg while at a Wal-Mart store in Phoenix on Saturday.” Given that early establishment of who acted and who/what he acted upon, I’m ok with the subsequent passive construction. I interpret the later “[…] it went off” to be just a description of the event for its own sake, and not intended to obscure who acted on whom or what.

    No matter how one describes it, though, it’s operator negligence, I agree.

  3. It just went off!

    If your weapon is holstered and the holster fully covers the trigger, it should be a friggin statistical anomaly that this even happened.

    He’s probably leaving out a little info…

  4. So, if I am involved in a DGU, I can just say “the gun just went off, I never touched it.” and I’ll have so many articles to back that up that no one can dispute the fact that it “just went off” all by itself.

  5. If, and it’s a BIG “if,” the gun really did just “go off,” my guess is he was using something like a VersaCarry rather than a proper holster. Much more likely that his booger-hook was somewhere it shouldn’t have been, though.

  6. I carry with DOA only, yep and one in the pipe. Trigger pull 8# and requires a long pull. I just don’t want to shoot myself in the balls, hee, hee. Hmmm, that’s not funny.

  7. OMG, I can’t believe the confusion over this event. It is clear to me his girlfriend or wife asked him if the gun’s safety was on while he was reaching for his wallet. He became annoyed at her while insisting the gun’s safety was on, and then he defiantly pulled the trigger to prove the safety was engaged. See, a safety on a gun is always a problem.

    • I think you just need to stop making assumptions. We don’t actually know if that was the case with what little we know, anyone can invent any story at this point. Hell, maybe he spotted a little girl possessed by a demon and was trying to stop it…. how’s that story – it has the same amount of supporting evidence.

  8. Damn, it’s crap like this that makes gun owners look bad. I can agree with anti-gun citizens at least in this case that he should not have had a gun! HE was a danger to himself and others. I’m not even going to ask how he managed to shoot himself in the stomach, that doesn’t matter. What matters is that if he hadn’t shot himself, he could have very possibly have shot a inattentive shopper who was simply going about their day. I want to say (like “Smokey the Bear”) “Only YOU can prevent stupid gun owners!,” but how can we get rid of people like him as gun owners when we are also trying to retain the right to own guns for every law abiding citizen?

  9. Figures some of you idiots would turn this into a Glock vs 1911 safety debate. On any pistol the first safety is between your ears. I think the more important part to take away from this article is why a guy who shot himself in the leg was covering his belly??

  10. What we have here is a poorly written news report that offers few real facts and of course
    makes the typical ignorance based statement of “the gun went off”….

    In reality the number of “accidental” discharges that occur is vanishingly small….. in many
    years numbering a big fat ZERO. What DOES happen is “NEGLIGENT” discharges.
    Virtually EVERY gun that “goes off” went off because someone had a finger on the trigger
    and that is almost certainly what happened in this case. However unless someone does
    a better job of digging up and reporting the facts on this event the general public will never
    know the truth.

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