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Everyone’s favorite gun-handling expert, DEA agent Lee Paige of the agency’s Orlando office, has provided gunnies with years of YouTube guffaws and keyboard-fouling coffeespits as we’ve relived the, er, “professional” demonstrating gun safety for a room full of impressionable yoots back in 2004. You might think that kind of publicly self-inflicted beclowning would induce someone to slink away and keep a generally low profile. You’d be wrong.

The now former undercover agent has been on a personal crusade ever since the indisputable video evidence of his incompetence hit the intertubes. His quest: to wring some cash out of his employer over the release of the video…

That’s right, Paige has argued (and lost) in court claiming that his privacy was violated when someone at the agency let the once-viral video loose in the electronic wilds.

Paige sued the DEA in Washington federal district court, alleging that leaking the video violated his privacy rights. A roughly four-minute clip of the shooting—cut and copied from a longer tape of the lecture—made its way online.

A federal trial judge ruled in December 2010 for the DEA, saying among other things that Paige has failed to identify the leaker and cannot therefore show that any person acted willfully and intentionally. The identity of the leaker remains unknown despite a two-year DEA internal investigation.

The judge, Jack Shanstrom, also noted the shooting occurred in a public forum while Paige was on duty. Paige, once an undercover agent, said the publicity the video received prohibits him from working undercover.

But as LegalTimes tells us, Paige remains unbowed. He’s back again, ambulance-chaser in tow, arguing his case in front of a federal appeals court in Washington.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit today spent much of its time examining whether the four-minute video of the shooting was ever a part of the DEA’s “system of records.”

That’s a threshold question for the appeals court. To convince the court that he is entitled to protection under federal privacy laws, Paige must show that the video clip was a part of the DEA’s record system.

Paige apparently figures the only way to find the silver lining in being viciously snarked upon and embarrassed in front of a good percentage of the world’s computer owners is to extract a nice chunk of taxpayer money from the DEA. Here’s hoping Agent Paige enjoys every bit as much success in his legal efforts as he did in his safety demonstration.

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  1. It seems that after shooting himself in the leg, Agent Lee (please turn the) Paige is bound and determined to shoot himself in the foot. Hey, Lee, you’re an arrogant schmuck. If you’re smart, you’ll just let it go at that.

  2. Well, if his lawsuit doesn’t bear any fruit, he could join Plaxico in the “negligent discharge self injury” club and work for the Brady campaign.

  3. That’s the first time I’ve seen what happened after he shot himself. So he continued the lecture (what the …) and brought out another gun, freaking out a number of kids. Nice.

    Alright look … If you do undercover work, you probably shouldn’t be doing public lectures wearing a shirt that says “police” on the front and “DEA” on the back. Is this standard practice? To stick undercover agents out there representing the police? If so, it wasn’t the video of his stupidity that put his ability to do undercover work at risk. The practice of using undercover agents for publicity (even in schools) already did that.

    • I think the law enforcement indicia he wore were just for effect. Even though he is “plainclothes” showing up casually dressed in regular street clothes might have been a bit odd. I have issues with these “cop in the classroom” visits, anyway. Unless they’re SWAT, the firearm they carry should be de-emphasized, and the officer’s role in maintaining law and order should be emphasized. Things have gone south if a uniformed officer has to draw a weapon, and disastrously wrong if a plainclothes cop or undercover agent has to do it. Police (other than SWAT) generally aren’t gunfighters by trade – that weapon backs up the mantle of authority we’ve given them as a society to enforce our laws. Yes, the kiddies want to know about the pistol on the officer’s hip, but it needs to be brought into context. That said, I certainly don’t have an issue with an officer of any type giving a separate firearms safety briefing for kids. In fact, I think that gun safety, stripped of any political trappings, is a perfectly appropriate subject.

  4. The moral of the story is- If you are going to do something stupid like shooting yourself in the foot, don’t do it in front of an audience with a camera running.

  5. “The identity of the leaker remains unknown despite a two-year DEA internal investigation.” Probably because it was leaked by 200 ATF agents who were laughing themselves to death while they reviewed it.

    “The judge, Jack Shanstrom, also noted the shooting occurred in a public forum while Paige was on duty. ” And I would just like to say, as a taxpayer, that I very much appreciate seeing the results of my taxpayer-financed firearms safety training for ATF agents. Hey, he even showed the Glock with the slide back to his fellow agents to have them verify that it was an “empty gun”. This kind of publicity certainly makes me proud of our Federal law enforcement agents.

    • Ooops, sorry, that’s DEA leakers and firearms safety training, not ATF. We all know that ATF represents the true experts on handling and moving guns – into Mexico. But they move them in a safe manner!

  6. I’m surprised none of the children’s parents sued the SCHOOL for placing their children in mortal danger. If I had been one of those parents, I would have at the very least dressed down the school’s superintendent in a BIG way.

  7. my FAVORITE part of the video is when he asks his partner to hand him the other firearm, and he doesnt even budge. then the kid yells “put it down”

    a close second is when he keeps trying to keep order in the room, but there is not even a whisper coming from the room.

    W H A T A T O O L

    additionally, there is no “Glock Fowtee”—I believe its a Glock 21 in .40 Caliber

    wow—good thing he was a professional, just think what a non-professional would have done

    • Actually the glock 21 is .45 acp glock 22, 23 and 27 are .40 s&w lol you probably would have shot yourself too dumb ass.

      • No, the Glock 21 is a “Glock Foety Five” and AH am the ONLIEST one in this room qualified to CAY it and blow my FOOT off. AH also am the ONLIEST one in this room qualified to CAY a M16 and blow my HAID off, if someone would just HAIND it TOOME !!!

  8. I just can’t believe that this hasn’t been settled. Build him some guns out of lego blocks and have him do demonstrations, or reenactments of how he shot himself. Pushing this just proves once and for all that he is a DANGER, mostly to himself. It’s like, what happened, oh I shot myself but it wasn’t my fault so you should give me some compensation, or punitive damages, YEA RIGHT. 50 cent and too short don’t have bullet wounds. You could write the glock 40 song and launch a new career in RAP MUSIC. And study the muzzle blast dance that you invented, while snapping your fingers. We may be onto something here, can I have a share if the music goes platnum?

    • Actually 50 cent does have bullet wounds, 9 of them in fact.

      Also, it’s spelled platinum, not “platnum”.

      A genius like you should know better, maybe your peer Lee Paige can help you with your general knowledge.

  9. Just what was he doing in a SCHOOL with a loaded gun.. and anyone who knows anything about GUNS knows that the gun cannot discharge unless your trigger finger is inside the trigger guard!!!! I’ m just glad this MORON never pointed his GLOCK in my direction. DO NOT place your finger inside the trigger guard unless your target /suspect , has been positively IDENTIFIED>> too bad he didn’t aim alittle higher.. he could have saved us all the court COSTS.. HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO GO HUNTING WITH MR. PAIGE??

    • Would NOT like to. He broke EVERY one of the safe gun handling rules. Did you notice, he held up his Glock 21 high and racked it to show everyone it was clear but he HAD NOT removed the magazine, so now it was loaded AND charged ! Then, without doing a brass check he pointed it at the floor and PULLED the trigger to see if it was loaded ~ of course, then, shooting his foot ! Unbelievable. I wonder what kept the adults from throwing him out on the spot !

  10. Well…. After I got done rolling on the floor laughing my head off, I came to realize how easily an accidental discharge could happen to anyone from just a momentary lapse of awareness and adherence to safety procedures. His reputation, and the respect he had earned over a long career was destroyed in the few seconds that he took his eye off the ball. The truth is that he got lucky, really lucky, in that his momentary lapse of awareness only killed his reputation and not one of the fifty children in the classroom. Instead of blaming the DEA for ruining his “rep”, he should be eternally grateful that he did not have to live the rest of his life with the guilt of knowing that he was responsible for ending the
    life of another.

    • AH didn’t FOEGET safety PROSEEJAHS ! AH JUS FOEGOT to take MAH CLIP out when AH did MAH brass safety check. But AH REMEMBAHD to snap the slide shut BEFOE AH pulled the TRIGGUH on MAH Glock FOETY safely pointed at MAH foot and shot MAHSEF !

  11. “…said the publicity the video received prohibits him from working undercover.”

    I’d say his inability to properly handle a loaded weapon prohibits ‘him’ from working with one again.

  12. EI think he’s an Hero,!!!! Lee Paige was doing a demonstration for a GOOD cause & something went wrong. This man didn’t panic he kept his composure & still proceed on while injured but also made sure everyone was safe as well!!!! That being he an Black African American Man working for the DEA AGENT & An Hero

    • This wasn’t an instance of something “going wrong” as if it were an unpreventable natural disaster. This was the simple result of poor trigger discipline. Guns don’t just go off on their own; people fire them. He didn’t visually clear his weapon and paid a fairly small price for his irresponsibility. If that’s your idea of heroism, I guess the term has lost more meaning than I thought.

  13. The whole situation is indicative of society today. Here, a barely literate DEA “agent” has an ND (negligent discharge), not an AD (accidental discharge) as he states and who is to blame? Others, for letting the video become public.

    Sorry, asshat, but when you have an ND on duty, you should lose the right to carry a firearm on the job. In the SF community, an ND is a career killer. You have proven yourself unsafe and unreliable and your reputation is the first casualty. When your rep is one of incompetence, it’s tough to shake. Paige may have only shot his foot (thankfully), but he put a .40 caliber HP through his career. Good riddance.

  14. well if he seems to think he has reason to sue his department than all the parents definately have reason to sue him for endangering their children which he would loose. He should think about that but it seems that he doesn’t do much thinking. This is probably why he was giving lectures instead of real police work. Obviously he was in no way an undercover agent with this role. Of course just firing him for incompetence sooner was not possible and be politically correct. Let’s keep our children safe and stop the hiring for quota reasons. Trying to place these bafoons somewhere endangers someone.

  15. Go to a Black Lives Matter protest. Have a poster with his face on it.

    The caption underneath: “The Problem Isn’t Racism.”

    • It’s to bad. I think the department allowing a real gun in the classroom caused this. He had a accident and even after he shot himself he kept talking and trying to do the right thing. This could have been a great example of how accidents do occur and they are so unpredictable they don’t allways happen when someone is doing something stupid. That’s why they are accidents and not toys and should only be used in very controlled situations. Allowing a life firearm in a classroom was not his call and beyond his control. But he took the prideful stance and I don’t blame him either. For him to be that tore up because of the backlash is understandable to me. And a great example how someone that can be that focused and that trusted can crumble eventually when left to the wolves society has become. I’d back him and say the department should take responsibility as they should not have a policy that allows guns in schools. If they wanna sit in the street in their car fine but there is no reason for guns to be in schools with school children. And society is to blame for his lawsuites because they have become a pack of wolves attacking anyone they can and in the most viscious ways. It could have been a learning experience for the department and society but instead prob gonna be put the kids on pills so they eventually learn how to work the mental health industry and become sane ppl walking around acting crazy to get poverty wages and future health problems from the pills. He could sue the department for having a policy that allowed guns in schools and that would make sense if they didn’t all ready change it. If they did he should go play football lol


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