Photo by Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images.
An apparent freak accident that left a Detroit woman dead Sunday after she hugged an off-duty police officer from behind causing his holstered handgun to fire into her chest has gun experts and the victim's family wondering aloud if there is more to the story.
The Associated Press reports that the Detroit Police Department said that Adaisha Miller was dancing with 16-year veteran police officer Isaac Parrish at a party at his home early Sunday morning when she touched his waist from behind, somehow manipulating the gun’s trigger. "There is absolutely no indication that the officer placed his hand on his weapon at all," Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee Jr. told reporters Monday.
But weapons experts and others are questioning the official account. David Malhalab, a Detroit police sergeant who retired in 2005, told the Detroit News that the story "really isn’t plausible" and encouraged the department to investigate.
A former Michigan State Police firearms examiner told the AP he had questions about the angle of the entry wound: "I’m having a great deal of difficulty understanding how a weapon that’s pointed at the ground can be turned literally 110 degrees minimum to be in an upward position to strike someone."
Meanwhile, Miller’s mother, Yolanda McNair, questioned the series of events that ended her daughter’s life days before her 25th birthday. "Why do you need a gun at your own house? Why do you need a gun at your own party?" she told the AP.
Detroit police officers are permitted to carry weapons when off duty, according to msnbc.com, so long as they are licensed and their guns properly holstered. Parrish was carrying a Smith & Wesson 40-caliber semi-automatic, a standard-issue gun for the department, which has a safety mechanism internal in the trigger instead of an external safety. Godbee explained that the material of Parrish’s off-duty holster was soft enough that the trigger could be accessed through it.