Tellico Plains, Tennessee – A man accidentally shot himself and his wife at a Tennessee church during a discussion about firearms in light of the recent church massacre in Texas.
Elder members of the First United Methodist Church met for a Thanksgiving dinner and began discussing the Texas shooting, according to the Washington Post. Someone asked if anyone brought a gun to their church that day.
A man spoke up and said he carried his gun wherever he went.
“Well, I’ve got my gun on me,” an 81-year-old member of First United Methodist Church said, according to police.
He then pulled the .38-caliber Ruger out and emptied the magazine and chamber and passed the gun around.
The members talked about how to safely bring guns to church, the Washington Post reported.
Once he got his gun back, the man reloaded the gun.
Later, a church member who missed the demonstration asked to see the gun.
Just as the man was to show it to the church member, he accidentally pulled the trigger without realizing the gun was loaded.
The gun went off and hit the man in the hand and his wife, who was in a wheelchair, in the abdomen, according to police.
Because the demonstration was over, there was confusion in the church as to what happened and people called 911 and told the dispatcher someone was shot at the church, the newspaper reported.
The dispatcher assumed it was an active shooter incident and nearby schools were briefly put on lockdown.
The two were taken to the hospital by helicopter for non-life threatening injuries. Police did not release their names.