A D.C. police sergeant told an officer to unload his weapon before entering a room of 10-20 armed officers pretending to be an active shooter during roll call at the first district station in Southwest Saturday, multiple police sources told News4.
“That officer is lucky to be alive,” said Katie Meyers, a certified arms trainer and former police officer.
Chief Cathy Lanier would not comment on specifics of what happened after the officer entered the room with his gun drawn, but police sources said the officer pointed his gun at another officer and “dry fired” his weapon.
“A sergeant was doing a training exercise, and there was some confusion about the exercise, and I haven't even really seen a preliminary on it yet,” Lanier said.
No one was hurt, but at least one officer is on medical leave due to stress, sources said.
The incident is under internal investigation, Lanier said.
D.C. police are not supposed to use real guns when training.
Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia local news, events and information
“If you’re going to go into a room with armed people for a training exercise, to me that’s a recipe for disaster,” Meyers said.
Pointing a real gun at another person as a training exercise violates basic gun safety principles, Meyers said.
“Even unloaded, never ever point that firearm at another human being,” she said. “The only time you ever point a firearm at something is when you’re willing to destroy that something.”
The sergeant has been with the department for 30 years. D.C. police initially told News4 the sergeant and officer who dry fired are on administrative leave, but that is not the case.