Sunday, March 3

Indian River County Sheriff’s Office didn’t fix gun, which led to deputy shooting himself

An Indian River County Sheriff’s deputy is suing a gun manufacturer after his department-supplied gun, a Sig Sauer P320, shot him in the leg without him pulling the trigger.

A potential fix to the weapon existed since August 2017, according to his lawsuit. Yet, his weapon didn’t receive the updates even though the Indian River Sheriff’s Office said it started to use the defected gun in 2021.

Joseph Abollo, who is a captain and spokesman for the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office, said the department switched over to the Sig Sauer P320 after Eric Flowers became sheriff in 2021. During a call with WPTV, Abollo said the department is not responsible for making the repairs.

“We werent aware of the issue, Abollo said. Our training unit did the background on the topic and issue on the time.”

The law enforcement agency said on Monday it will switch the firearm it provides to employees due to the incident, which will cost about $136,000 for 370 guns and holsters.

The Indian River County Sheriff’s Office is not a defendant in the lawsuit as of Monday. But, Deputy Zachary Seldes is suing Sig Sauer, Inc and a department supplier named Dana Safety Supply.

WPTV reached out to each party, but hasn’t heard back as of publication.

Nicholas Phillip-Yalley, who is a firearms instructor at Guns and Range Training Center in West Palm Beach, said the Sig Sauer P320 is “one of the most popular handguns on the market. He said the fixes for the weapon are well-known and if it didn’t occur he described it as “an accident waiting to happen.”

“If I see the larger trigger, I’m not going to touch the gun,” Phillip-Yalley said.

He said the box also comes with a notice warning users about the issue, which the company describes as a “voluntary upgrade.”

Seldes’ lawsuit argues Sig Sauer hid the problem for years and then didn’t issue a mandatory recall in the filing, which was made in October 2023.

“Maybe it shouldnt have been voluntary, Phillip-Yalley opined.

Okeechobee and Palm Beach County sheriff’s offices along with the Boca Raton Police Department and Boyton Beach Police Department said they do not use the Sig Sauer P320.

WPTV reached out to other law enforcement agencies over the issue and haven’t received a response.

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