MISHAWAKA, Ind. — A police officer whose loaded department-issued handgun was found along a busy northern Indiana roadway will get a letter of reprimand and verbal counseling.

South Bend police Chief Scott Ruszkowski recommended the disciplinary action in a letter to the Board of Public Safety and it was discussed in the board’s closed executive session Wednesday. The officer’s name wasn’t released.

Ruszkowski’s letter says the officer was negligent and didn’t appropriately secure or safeguard the gun, which fell from atop the officer’s vehicle.

The South Bend Police Department began an internal investigation after a reporter for WNDU-TV found the gun Sept. 17 along Indiana 23 in Mishawaka, just east of South Bend. The 9 mm Smith and Wesson had “SBPD” engraved on its side and police confirmed it belonged to the department.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.