|The moment Special Agent Twinkle Toes negligently fired his dropped Glock|
That FBI agent who dropped his pistol by doing a backflip on the dance floor of a bar in Denver has been sentenced, and to say the judge let him dance away would be an understatement.
The Denver Post has the details:
The FBI agent charged with accidentally shooting a man after doing a backflip on the dance floor at a Denver bar last summer will avoid jail time after pleading guilty Friday to third-degree assault.
Under his deal with prosecutors, Chase Bishop, 30, immediately was sentenced to two years probation. He was also fined $1,200 and ordered to pay restitution to the victim. Denver District Judge Karen Brody cited Bishop’s lack of criminal history in her decision to accept the plea agreement.
Bishop had pleaded not guilty last month to a second-degree assault charge in connection with the June 2 incident.
“My whole goal in life is to care, protect and serve people,” Bishop told the judge on Friday. “I never expected the result of my actions to lead to something like this.”
That is a strangely garbled sentence. The wounding of the bystander was not something which the results of the agent's actions led to. His actions were to drop a pistol in a crowded public venue and then recklessly snatch it up off the floor, in the course of which he snagged the trigger. The result of his actions was to inflict a gunshot wound on a bystander. Those results led to today's remarkably light sentence.
Bishop, who was in Denver on FBI business when the incident occurred, will serve his probation in Georgia. Brody said she could be receptive to ending his probation after one year if Bishop complies with the terms.
“This is a tragic situation,” Brody said after she announced Bishop’s sentence. “It’s a lesson for everyone: How decisions, when you’re not being conscious of what you’re doing, decisions you make carelessly, with negligence, can turn into really serious consequences.
“I think in the future,” she said to Bishop, “you will never make that kind of mistake again.”
I'm not so sure about that. A prison sentence and a stiff fine would make a much bigger impression on Special Agent Bishop, I say, not to mention on any other law enforcement officers who carry while they drink and party. In fact, today's piddling one year probation and $1,600 fine from a judge who sounded apologetic about giving him even that much is more likely to embolden than to deter other negligent gun carriers.
Reddington spoke emotionally Friday about how that one June night at the bar changed his life. He lost his job at the Amazon warehouse. He has chronic pain in his leg. He doesn’t think he’ll ever be able to run again.
“I have done months of physical therapy,” he said. “I have sought counseling. However, being in public, especially seeing law enforcement with guns, makes me very uncomfortable.”
“I’ve done stupid things at bars to impress girls, too,” Reddington said.
Reddington said he didn’t believe Bishop deserved years in jail for what he did.
“The only thing I’m hoping for,” Reddington said, “Is that he doesn’t carry a gun for a long time.”
Mr. Reddington sounds very understanding. But I'll bet none of the stupid things he ever did to impress girls involved negligently shooting someone. Does he really think he got justice from Judge Brody for his chronic pain and loss of employment? I sure don't.