A 19-year-old IU student accidentally shot himself in the upper thigh Monday, which he originally reported to the police as an injury from a drive-by shooting, police said.
The original report resulted in IU issuing an IU Notify alert around 4 p.m. Monday about a shooting at Dunn Street and Varsity Lane.
The student was reportedly carrying a handgun in his pocket while walking near Varsity Lane. The gun, which was not in a holster, discharged, injuring the student’s leg, Bloomington Police Department Sgt. Dana Cole said.
The student reportedly walked to a friend’s nearby apartment and asked the friend to call the police to report the shooting. The shooting was first reported to police as a drive-by shooting. The student handed the gun off to the friend, who hid it in the apartment, Cole said.
Police arrived at the 400 block of East Varsity Lane around 3:26 p.m., Cole said. The injured student told police he was shot by someone in a passing car. Officers applied a tourniquet to the student’s leg before medics arrived, Cole said.
After examining the injury and discussing it with medical staff, police determined the injury could not have been the result of a drive-by shooting because the bullet had a downward trajectory, Cole said.
The student admitted to police the gun had been in his pocket and had gone off, Cole said. The student said he carried it for protection and was not sure how the trigger was pulled. Cole said the student told police he had applied for a license to carry but had not yet received it.
The student’s friend cooperated and gave the gun to police, Cole said.
The student was transported to the IU Health Bloomington Hospital. Cole said the student will not be charged.