Normally I will pick Asshats with their ass firmly intact, but that isn't the case today and this week's winner, Officer Bryan Mallin. Read on, oh lovers of ye olde Asshat....
Off-duty UIC cop accidentally shoots himself in store
Cop under investigation after Vernon Hills incident
By Carolyn Rusin and Jodi S. Cohen, Chicago Tribune
March 24, 2010
A police officer for the University of Illinois at Chicago is under investigation after his gun accidentally discharged, wounding him in the buttocks while he shopped at a Vernon Hills shopping center, officials said Tuesday.
Police are looking into whether Officer Bryan Mallin may have violated department policy, though officers are allowed to carry guns off-duty, said Bill Burton, a university spokesman.
UIC officers can carry weapons off-duty because "they are sworn officers with statewide statutory power," Burton said.
Mallin, 39, was shopping at a Best Buy store in Rivertree Court Shopping Center around 5:30 p.m. Monday when the .40-caliber gun tucked in his waistband went off, said Sgt. Kevin Grampo of the Vernon Hills Police Department.
The weapon discharged when either his finger or clothing got "hooked" in the trigger, Grampo said.
Vernon Hills police, he said, do not expect charges against Mallin, who was taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, where he was treated and released.
"We feel it was a true accident," Grampo said, who cited federal law that allows off-duty officers to carry weapons.
Burton declined to discuss the university's policy for officers who carry weapons off-duty, specifically whether it requires guns to be in holsters instead of waistbands.
"I am not able to get into that level of detail while the investigation is ongoing," he said, adding that officers get training in weapon safety.
Mallin has been an officer for UIC police for five years. He is on medical leave while police investigate the incident, Burton said.
Every law enforcement agency has its own internal policies for carrying weapons off-duty, said Chief Ronald Swan of the Illinois State University police. "We don't require them to carry them, but they can if they wish," he said.
Some rules require a gun to be concealed, and if an officer is going to consume alcohol, the gun must be left behind.
"It doesn't make any difference if the officer is carrying it on his ankle, his shoulder, his belt … it must be concealed," the chief said. "We also expect a level of professionalism if they are going to carry it. Discretion plays a big part of the role."
Carolyn Rusin is a freelance reporter; Jodi S. Cohen is a Tribune staff reporter.
Copyright © 2010, Chicago Tribune