Bridgeport Officer Arrested After Accidentally Shooting Himself

The Bridgeport police officer who accidentally shot himself in the foot in a crowded bagel shop in December has been charged with unlawful discharge of a firearm.

According to police, on the morning of Dec. 17, Officer Juan Santiago was sitting at a table at Bagel King with three other Bridgeport Police Officers when he “mishandled” another officer’s pistol and shot himself in the left thigh.

Santiago was taken to St. Vincent’s Medical Center for treatment. His injuries were minor.

He turned himself in to Connecticut State Police and was arrested Feb. 10 following a joint investigation conducted by state police and the State’s Attorney’s Office.

Protestors rallied outside Bridgeport police headquarters on Dec. 23 to ask police to file charges against Santiago. The investigation began that day.

Santiago remains on administrative status with the Bridgeport Police Department.

“First, I would like to say we are grateful that the officer is recovering from his injury,” said Police Chief Joseph L. Gaudett, Jr., in a statement. “We have said from the outset that we requested the State Police handle the investigation so the public would have confidence that it would be fair and unbiased. The State Police conducted a thorough investigation, consulted with the State’s Attorney’s Office and made a determination that we will respect.”

Santiago was released on a promise to appear and is due in court Feb. 18.

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