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Sig Sauer issues voluntary recall after unintentional discharge wounds officer
Sig Sauer issued a voluntary upgrade of its popular P320 handgun after an officer filed a $6 million lawsuit against the firearms manufacturer for the gun's unintentional discharge. (Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

Sig Sauer issues voluntary recall after unintentional discharge wounds officer

Firearms manufacturer Sig Sauer on Tuesday issued a voluntary upgrade of its popular P320 handgun in order to address unintentional discharges.

"Recent events indicate that dropping the P320 beyond U.S. standards for safety may cause an unintentional discharge," Sig Sauer said in a statement. "As a result of input from law enforcement, government and military customers, SIG has developed a number of enhancements in function, reliability, and overall safety including drop performance. SIG SAUER is offering these enhancements to its customers. Details of this program will be available at sigsauer.com on Monday, August 14, 2017."

According to the firearms manufacturer, the M17 version of the P320, which is the standard Army-issued handgun, is not affected.

The "voluntary upgrade" comes days after Stamford, Connecuticut, Police Officer Vincent Sheperis filed a $6 million lawsuit against Sig Sauer. Sheperis alleges his holstered P320 pistol fell to the ground and discharged, News 12 Connecticut reported.

When the handgun discharged, the bullet hit Sheperis just below the left knee, penetrated the tissue and part of the tendon before lodging to the left of his knee, the lawsuit alleges. The round was "protruding from his leg."

The officer has had to undergo multiple surgeries and was put on light duty due to the accident.

"Because it [the firearm] was holstered, the trigger was protected from any movement upon impact with the ground, in addition to the protection provided by the pistol's own trigger guard and internal safeties which failed to prevent the weapon from firing," the lawsuit alleges.

Following the incident, the Stamford Police Department removed all P320s from department use.

Officer Sheperis' lawsuit also included 11 other instances where Sig Sauer firearms were alleged to experience unintentional discharges due to dropping.

Sig Sauer's public information officer, Melinda Gutierrez, provided Connecticut Law Tribune with a statement about its handguns when Officer Sheperis' lawsuit initially came to light on Aug. 4:

We have not currently had any issues with the Sig Sauer P320 handgun. The use of the Sig Sauer P320 handgun has been temporarily suspended due to safety precautions. The departmental Firearms Training Center staff is currently working with Sig Sauer to ensure the safety precautions are addressed.

All Sig Sauer pistols incorporate effective mechanical safeties to ensure they only fire when the trigger is pressed. However, like any mechanical device, exposure to acute conditions (e.g. shock, vibration, heavy or repeated drops) may have a negative effect on these safety mechanisms and cause them to not work as designed.

Sig Sauer did not immediately respond to TheBlaze's request for comment.

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