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Winchester police abandon new holsters after gun incident

By Joe Beck

A school bus shooting incident in which a student managed to squeeze the trigger on a police officer's gun has led the Winchester Police Department to abandon new holsters acquired only about six months ago.

Lauren Cummings, community relations specialist with the department, said the holsters will not be returned to service. They were withdrawn in the aftermath of the May 13 incident.

"We still don't believe there's anything wrong with the holster, but because we had an incident, we just don't feel comfortable returning them to service," Cummings said in an interview Tuesday.

Police officers for the time being will continue wearing the holsters they used up until the time the new ones arrived.

Cummings said the department hasn't decided what to do with the 50 new holsters. She said it is uncertain whether the Safariland als. Level III model 6360 light bearing holsters will be returned to the manufacturer or whether the department will get any money back.

She said research is continuing into finding alternatives to the old and new holsters.

Police concluded that the student fired the gun accidentally as he sat next to the officer on the bus while on the way to Daniel Morgan Middle School.

The officer was called to help restore order on the bus after school officials reported unruly behavior by the student. Police said the officer had calmed the student at the time the gun was fired into the floor of the school bus.

No one was injured as a result of the incident.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com


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