A 30-year-old FBI agent, who was off duty, accidentally shot a man while dancing at Miles High Spirits in Denver’s Ballpark neighborhood; he performed a backflip in a video which went viral.
In the video, while the other partygoers looked at Agent Bishop Chase do the backflip, his gun fell from the waistband of his trousers. The weapon fired just as he bent to pick it off the ground. The bullet hit a man, Tom Reddington, a 24-year-old Amazon warehouse staff.
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After the shooting, the video showed the FBI agent walk the stage with his hands on his head.
The incident happened last summer, and all court proceedings have been concluded. The FBI agent would be avoiding jail time after pleading guilty to a third-degree assault.
He got a deal that offered him a two-year probation; he was also fined with a $1,200 and ordered by the judge, Denver District Judge Karen Brody to pay restitution. The judge gave her reason for accepting the plea agreement as Chase's lack of criminal history.
“My whole goal in life is to care, protect and serve people,” -the FBI agent told the judge on Friday.
He said, “I never expected the result of my actions to lead to something like this.”
He was off duty and just wanted to let his hair down when the accidental shooting took place.
The victim suffered permanent injuries; he was emotional as he spoke; stating that the incident changed his life.
He lost his job at Amazon warehouse. He also said he regularly has chronic pain in his leg and may not be able to run again.
He further explained how months of physical therapy and counseling hadn't helped him. Being in public, especially seeing law enforcement with guns, makes him very uncomfortable.
Tom finally added that he holds no personal grudge against Mr. Bishop. He feels a jail term is not necessary, but he wishes the latter doesn't handle a gun for a long time.
Bishop who was on FBI business in Denver when the incident happened will serve his probation in Georgia.
Judge Brody added that she is open to ending his probation after one year if Bishop complies with the terms of his plea agreement.
“I think in the future, you will never make that kind of mistake again,” the judge said.
Regarding Bishop's employment status at the FBI; spokeswoman Kelsey Pietranton said:
“It's our standard practice not to comment on personnel matters.”
The FBI agent has apologized to Reddington “Mr. Reddington...I'm extremely sorry for everything he's gone through.”
Guns are deadly, it's important to take safety measures when necessary.