A 22-year-old Milwaukee man accidentally shot himself in the femoral artery around 11:00 PM Friday evening while attempting to reholster a pistol. Despite the best efforts of the local hospital trauma units, Timothy Phonisay did not survive his wounds.
This is a reminder to not be complacent when you’re handling firearms, no matter how tacticool you think you are.
Some things to ponder, after reading about the incident at Bearing Arms and Concealed Nation:
1. Many are assuming that the deceased had his finger on the trigger. If you read the article, it doesn’t state that he was at fault for that. Regardless, we know that guns do not go off by themselves (although there’s the potential if the gun is dropped)…he either had his finger on the trigger or something snagged the trigger.
2. The assumption is that, due to the wound’s location, he was carrying appendix style. That assumption is highly likely. Do you really need to carry at your appendix? Some people think that appendix carry is their only option due to body type (tall, lanky, skinny). I’d rather print with hip carry than chance a femoral artery gunshot wound. That’s just my opinion, though.
3. I saw a lot of berating of the deceased. Many are calling him “dumb”. We don’t have enough facts to make such judgments. Besides that, you’d think the firearms community would show a bit of sympathy, because this could be any one of us, experienced or newly initiated. We’re supposed to be comrades, no?
4. The deceased was apparently taking selfies of himself with his gun. Maybe he was so intent on getting a good picture that he wasn’t paying attention to safety. The lesson here would be to not fragment your attention when handling a gun.
5. The article states that he was using a Springfield Armory. The author noted that he more than likely had an XD, but I don’t understand how that assumption was made. Yes, XDs are popular, but I don’t think they’re so popular that there’s, for example, an 80% chance of a Springfield owner owning an XD. Hell, Springfield Armory sells a lot of 1911s, too.
6. The article states that he was bleeding heavily from his lungs. Conspiracy theorists are already getting uptight. While I’m no doctor, they did state that there were only two areas of injury (I’m assuming it was an entrance and exit wound), in the groin area. I’m not sure why the article mentioned the blood in his lungs. Maybe the projectile bounced around a bit in his body?
7. Some are using this tragic happening as a reason to carry in condition 3 (mag in the gun but no round chambered). I’m not sure this is a strong argument, as guns don’t go off by themselves…he either accidentally actuated the trigger or something snagged the trigger while he was trying to holster the gun.
8. Lastly, if the deceased had holstered SLOWLY, and only after checking around the holster for anything that could snag the trigger, he might still be alive. As well, if the guy’s weapon was an XD, those guns have grip safeties…most people don’t realize that when you’re gripping the gun (properly), you’ve disabled the grip saftety, which allows the trigger to be actuated. Holstering such guns with the maximum amount of safety would mean that you’d have to holster the gun without grabbing the grip and disabling the grip safety. The same applies to 1911s (in case he was carrying a Springfield 1911 when the mishap occurred).
This guy’s life was tragically ended. It reminds me to always have the utmost of respect for these weapons and to train with them so that certain actions become automatic…it doesn’t hurt to slow down to evaluate what you’re doing in your routine — those are the times you might be doing something wrong or dangerous, but you won’t know it because you’ve become compacent.