Police: Suspect Carried Gun To Benghazi Screening In Fear Of Mass Shootings

13 Hours shooting
January 25, 2016 10:11 a.m.

A man arrested for accidentally shooting a woman at a Washington state movie theater on Friday reportedly told police that he was armed because he feared mass shootings.

In a statement to police quoted by The Seattle Times, 29-year-old Dane Gallion said he brought a firearm to a screening of Michael Bay’s “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” in Renton because he was “concerned about recent mass shootings in public places.” Gallion said in the statement that he wore the gun unholstered in his waistband for the same reason.

Gallion’s firearm discharged during the film, striking a 40-year-old woman sitting in front of him in the shoulder. She was sent to a nearby hospital and was in stable condition as of Saturday.

The Seattle Times reported that Gallion’s explanations for how exactly the gun went off varied significantly. His father, Donald Gallion, told police that his son said the gun had fallen from his pocket and gone off. But Gallion himself told the arresting officer that another movie attendee had reached for his crotch, causing him to accidentally fire the weapon. He then told a different officer at the police station that a man had been bothering him and that the gun accidentally went off during their altercation, according to the newspaper.

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The Times reported that in his first court appearance over the weekend, Gallion was ordered to hand over all firearms to a family member for safekeeping and to steer clear of alcohol and controlled substances. He reportedly struggles with depression and anxiety, and told police he had taken anti-anxiety medication and consumed a 22-ounce beer Friday before seeing the movie.

Gallion’s bail was set at $25,000 and he’s due to appear in court again on Tuesday.

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