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Police: Woman injured by accidental gunshot

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A woman suffered a minor injury to her arm after a holstered handgun fell from a man’s pants, causing the weapon to discharge inside a business on the west side of Columbus.

At 8:03 p.m. Saturday, Columbus Police Chief Jon Rohde was inside Walmart, 2025 Merchants Mile, when he heard a gunshot inside the store. He located the man and woman involved and called for additional patrol units to assist, said Lt. Matt Myers, spokesman for Columbus Police Department.

Tony E. Ward, 56, of Columbus, told police that a .22-caliber handgun, for which he has a permit and was in a holster, fell from his waistband while he was shopping and discharged, Myers said.


One round went through a soda bottle in a shopping cart behind him and struck the right bicep of the woman who was pushing the cart, Virginia Thompson, 26, of Clifford. Her newborn son was in the cart, and she was accompanied by a boyfriend, Myers said.

The bullet hit the outside part of Thompson’s arm. She was seen by emergency medical personnel at the scene but declined to go to the hospital for further treatment, Myers said.

Police confirmed that Ward had a permit for the handgun and located the spent round and shell casing, Myers said.

Ward was not arrested, Myers said.

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