A dispatcher died early Friday as a result of an accidental shooting inside the Bell County 9-1-1 center, according to Kentucky State Police.
Police said in a news release that two dispatchers were trading firearms at the center when a gun accidentally went off. The bullet struck dispatcher Kyle Garrett, 23, of Frakes.
Garrett was rushed to the nearby Pineville Community Health Center but was pronounced dead there, according to the release.
The shooting happened about 1 a.m.
Bell County Sheriff Mitch Williams said Garrett and the second dispatcher were cousins and best friends. They had grown up together and had shared the hobby of swapping guns, Williams said.
However, Williams said the department has protocols that bar non-sworn officers, such as dispatchers, from having firearms in the 9-1-1 center. Those rules were not followed in the shooting incident, Williams said.
Williams’ statement requested prayer for the family of the two men and the other dispatchers, police officers and first responders who worked with them.
“This is a tragedy that you can never prepare for,” Williams said.