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Police: Off-duty officer accidentally shot self

November 11, 2021 GMT

UPPER MARLBORO, Md. (AP) — An off-duty Maryland police officer responding to a confrontation accidentally shot herself, police said.

Prince George’s County Police Chief Malik Aziz said the officer who joined the force last year was seriously wounded Wednesday and is recovering after surgery, news outlets reported.

The officer and a male acquaintance were driving to a hair appointment and on the phone with the barber who operates out of an Upper Marlboro home when they overheard a confrontation, police said.

Believing a robbery was in progress, the officer called 911 and when she arrived in the neighborhood, she waited for backup, police said. But it appears that when the officer reached for her duty weapon in her waistband, it accidentally discharged, police said.

She was struck in the abdomen, Aziz said.

The chief praised the officer for following her training by responding quickly and alerting colleagues for backup. County officers must to carry their weapons at all times, Aziz said.

“We don’t stop being police officers when we’re off duty,” the chief said. “We don’t have that kind of luxury.”

No charges are pending in the confrontation at the home, but the investigation is ongoing, police said.

The department’s investigating the accidental shooting.