Accidental discharge probe pending


— The investigation into a Colorado State Patrol trooper who accidentally discharged his weapon during a traffic stop is still pending. The investigation of the Aug. 6 incident was only expected to take several days.
Capt. Gary Torgerson of the Colorado State Patrol in Craig, said Thursday that the investigation of State Patrol veteran Marty Smith had not been completed because those responsible for the investigation have not returned his phone calls. He expects them to return by next week at the latest, he said.
Smith cannot be disciplined until the investigation is completed, Torgerson said.
Smith reportedly discharged his .40 caliber Smith and Wesson handgun while attempting to stop a carload of five teen-agers who were fleeing from him.
The bullet hit the ground between the teenagers' car and Smith's vehicle. No one was injured by the bullet.
Smith had stopped the teen-agers because they had been suspected of trespassing on private land outside of Craig. The teens were eventually caught that night and later released.
Smith said to his supervisors that he had tripped and fallen when approaching the teens.
He reportedly drew his firearm while he rose and banged it against his patrol vehicle. That's when the gun went off, he said.

To reach Avi Salzman call 871-4203 or e-mail


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