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News > U.S.

Dancing FBI Agent Accidentally Shoots Man, Dodges Jail Time

  • Former FBI agent Chase Bishop.

    Former FBI agent Chase Bishop. | Photo: Reuters

Published 22 December 2018

Thomas Reddington, who was shot in the leg, said he held "no personal grudge against Mr. Bishop." 

A former FBI agent who accidentally shot and wounded a man at a bar in Denver, Colorado after performing a backflip on the dance-floor pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault Friday, under a plea deal that spares him from serving jail time.

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According to a statement from prosecutors, 30-year-old Chase Bishop pleaded guilty to third-degree assault for shooting Thomas Reddington in the leg at the Mile High Spirits and Distillery.

"We believe that this agreement strikes an appropriate balance of seeking justice for the victim and ensuring that this type of incident does not happen again," District Attorney Beth McCann said.

Bishop, an armed FBI agent who was off-duty at the time, went to a nightclub in downtown Denver in early June. Video footage of the incident shows Bishop breakdancing and performing the backflip that led to his gun falling from its holster onto the dance floor. When Bishop picked it up he accidentally discharged, striking 25-year-old Reddington in the leg.

The Denver Post reported Bishop told the judge: "(I) never expected the result of my actions to lead to something like this ... my whole goal in life is to care, protect and serve people."

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Reddington's lawyer, Bill Marlin, told Reuters that his client is still recovering from a severed artery in his lower leg. Reddington was satisfied with the plea agreement that included no jail time, he said.

"His (Reddington’s) concern was about Bishop's conduct and his behavior after the shooting,” Marlin said. He added that Reddington has not decided on filing a lawsuit, but is "exploring civil remedies."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but Marlin said a prosecutor informed him that the FBI fired Bishop sometime after the incident.

Bishop was initially charged with second-degree assault, which is a felony. Bishop will serve two years of unsupervised probation in exchange for his guilty plea, the district attorney said.


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