- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Charles County investigators believe a Hughesville man died Saturday after accidentally shooting himself with his own handgun at an indoor firing range in Waldorf.
Officers arrived at 9:23 a.m. at the St. Charles Sportsman’s Club at 4045 Renner Road, where they found Patrick Allen Richards, 61, dead from a single gunshot wound to his upper body.
Investigators determined that Richards had gone to the range to shoot his handgun. While there, the gun fired, striking him once in the upper body.
Charles County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Diane Richardson said that one of two staff members at the range saw Richards fall down but did not witness the actual shooting. A staffer called police after going to check on Richards.
The club declined to comment through a receptionist.
At the time of the incident, there was another person firing a gun at the opposite end of the range, Richardson said.
It remains unclear how exactly the gun went off while pointed at Richards, but there were no signs of foul play and police are treating the shooting as an accident.
“We are still processing the evidence in the hopes we can put together a clear picture as to how this shooting occurred,” Richardson said in an email. “We are exploring a few different theories and we are looking into the possibility that gun recoil may have been a contributing factor.”
Detective B. Buchanan is investigating.