Local police chief pushes gun safety following viral video - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Local police chief pushes gun safety following viral video

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MURPHYSBORO, Ill. -- A local law police chief says the FBI agent who shot a bar patron in Denver while trying to pick up his gun which had fallen out of his pocket while break-dancing, was definitely not following best practices for gun owners, much less law enforcers.

Cell phone footage caught an off-duty FBI agent doing a back flip on the dance floor. You can see the gun flying out of his pocket and onto the floor.

When he went to grab it, it fired the round in chamber, hitting a bar patron in the leg.

Locally, police chiefs say it isn't uncommon for officers to carry their gun while off-duty.

"In my experience, most police officers carry all the time, there are some that carry most of the time when they're off and some that carry none of the time when they're off," said Murphysboro Police Chief Chad Roberts, "It just kind of varies."

In Murphysboro, all police officers carry guns while on-duty and they have the option to continue to carry while not at work. Chief Roberts said they have measures in place to make sure that gun will not accidentally go off.

"Its important to know the weapon, how it works and keep it concealed and secured," he said, "Make sure that weapon is safe for both you and bystanders."

Chief Roberts said the officers are always expected to handle the gun in a safe manner and carry them just as if they were on duty.

One thing he said that goes for anyone carrying a gun: keep them away from alcohol.

"You don't want to carry in an environment where you will be consuming alcohol, because you lose those inhibitions and the responsibility and discretion that comes with not being intoxicated," he said.

He said if you do choose to carry to know your firearm, how it works and keep it in a good holster.

Chief Roberts said a holster should correctly hold the gun, be comfortable and prevent an accidental discharge.

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