Road rage incident was accidental self-inflicted shooting
April 9, 2003
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — An incident initially reported as road rage turned out to be an accidental shooting, authorities said.
A 19-year-old woman allegedly told police Tuesday that she accidentally shot herself with a .32-caliber handgun Friday evening while sitting in her white Mazda.
Michele Alyssa Brown Tuesday retracted her story that a man leaned through her car window and fired a round into her left abdomen on Friday evening. She told detectives from South Lake Tahoe Police Department this after they revisited her bedside at Washoe Medical Center.
Authorities discovered the gun during a search of Brown’s vehicle Monday, Sgt. Alex Schumacher said.
Brown, who did not give a reason for the reported road rage, said she was playing with the gun in her car when it went off Friday evening, Schumacher said.
“She was not familiar with the pistol and while manipulating the action the pistol fired,” he said.
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The matter has been turned over to the El Dorado County district attorney’s office for possible charges relating to falsifying a police report, a misdemeanor, Schumacher said.
After the shot was fired, a bleeding Brown drove herself to her apartment complex on Keller Road. A neighbor called police and a Calstar helicopter took Brown, a Heavenly Ski Resort lift attendant, to the Reno hospital.
Her condition Tuesday was not available.