Police chief involved in accidental shooting for second time in 15 years

Chief turned down offer for late-night comedy show

INDIANAPOLIS - David Counceller has been around guns for most of his life -- he has decades of experience in law enforcement as a member of the U.S. Army and the Connersville Police Department.

Counceller's recent trip to the Wulff Gun Shop at 18th Street and Western Avenue in Connersville led to national attention.

The police chief's department-issue Glock 23 handgun accidentally fired, while he was shopping for a separate weapon.

"The store owner asked me if I was hit. I felt some burning," Counceller said.

He added, "I asked a paramedic to put a bandage on my wound, and I drove myself to the hospital. It was a superficial wound."

An internal police report credits separate security cameras for assisting in clearing the chief's role in the accidental shooting.

Counceller says he was not only ridiculed on social websites, but he also received an offer to appear on "The Arsenio Hall Show."

Producers from the late-night comedian's show offered to visit and interview Counceller for a segment on the program.

He turned Arsenio's people down.

"I don't have to be in an accident. I get ribbed all the time. It's part of the job," Counceller said.

The shooting in January was the second time Counceller had to deal with an accidental shooting.

In January 1999, he shot his hand while repairing a .380 automatic handgun, which he says had a retaining pin that kept falling off. Counceller says he was unaware that there was a bullet in the weapon's chamber.

"I felt pretty stupid, but it was my fault. I was not paying attention," he said.

Counceller rose through the ranks of the Connersville Police Department, which he joined in 1980. He's been police chief for the past seven years.

Thursday at 11 p.m. on RTV6, find out what Counceller learned from his recent shooting experience that he hopes will prevent injuries and empower gun owners to be safer.

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