Officer shoots ER patient at Henderson hospital
Posted May 11, 2011 3:00 p.m. EDT
Updated May 12, 2011 4:41 p.m. EDT
Henderson, N.C. — A police officer shot a patient during an altercation in the emergency room of a Henderson hospital Wednesday afternoon, officials said.
Henderson Police Chief Keith Sidwell said in a statement that Officer William Aiken was guarding a male patient who was being involuntarily committed at Maria Parham Medical Center when the patient became irate and combative, striking Aiken in the knee and head.
Aiken shot him in the leg after various attempts to calm and subdue him, including using a stun gun and pepper spray, Sidwell said.
The identity of the patient hasn't been released.
Aiken, who has been with the Henderson Police Department since the beginning of 2009, was placed on administrative duty pending the outcome of a review by the State Bureau of Investigation, which is standard procedure for officer-involved shootings.
The emergency room remained open to patients, but police limited access to the area so the SBI could investigate.
"We would like to commend our hospital staff for their quick and proper response to the events that unfolded," hospital administrators said in a statement.
"Our staff members are specially trained in how to react to events like these. Their first action is to ensure the safety of our patients, visitors and staff, and they acted accordingly," the statement continued.