Man, wife accidentally shot at church during talk about guns in church


At that point, one of the men pulled out the handgun he was carrying and told the others that he carries his gun everywhere he goes.

The 81-year old man took out a Ruger.38 hangun cleared it and showed it to other parishioners during an early Thanksgiving dinner on November 9 at First United Methodist Church in Tellico Plains.

Tellico Police Chief Russ Parks told The Knoxville News Sentinel that the man took out his.380 caliber Ruger handgun, after which he removed the magazine and cleared the chamber, following proper health and safety protocols when handling firearms. The member re-loaded the weapon and placed it back in his pocket, when another member approached him and asked to have a look at it. Parks said somehow, the trigger was pulled during the time of this second display. The man then loaded the magazine, apparently chambered a bullet, and returned the gun to its holster, police say. "Somebody else walked up and said, 'Can I see it?'".

The bullet sliced the man's hand and hit his wife in the stomach.

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The husband and wife, also in her 80s, were flown to a hospital.

Forgetting the weapon was loaded, he fired a single round, striking himself in the hand and his 80-year-old wife, who was sitting in her wheelchair.

No charges are expected as a result of the incident and the man is not expected to lose his carry permit, according to the News Sentinel. Parks says no charges will be filed. The couple was airlifted to University of Tennessee Medical Center.

Since the accidental shooting occurred during a weekday afternoon, a nearby school was put on lockdown over fears of an active shooter situation.