Tom Cowing, investigator with the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office, suffered a “non-life-threatening injury” Friday after being accidentally shot in the leg during a search related to Dylan Redwine north of Vallecito Reservoir.
The handgun fell out of his car and bounced on the ground, said La Plata County Sheriff’s spokesman Dan Bender.
“When the weapon hit the ground on its hammer, it discharged once and struck him in the leg,” Bender said.
The gun fell out when Cowing was retrieving some items from the back of the car about 7:20 a.m. on Middle Mountain Road north of Lake Vallecito Road.
The Durango Police Department and the Upper Pine River Fire Protection District responded.
Cowing was treated and released Friday at Mercy Regional Medical Center.
The Durango Police Department was asked by the Sheriff’s Office to review the incident because it involved a sheriff’s deputy.
Cowing was on duty to assist in a search related to the Dylan Redwine investigation.
Redwine, 13, disappeared in the wooded area before Thanksgiving of last year while visiting his father, Mark Redwine. Dylan Redwine had moved to Colorado Springs with his mother during the summer of 2012.
Dylan Redwine’s remains were found in June, but no one has been charged in connection with his death.
Investigators said Friday’s search was routine and not related to any new leads.
Upper Pine Fire Chief Bruce Evans told the Pine River Times that authorities wanted to search before winter set in.
Investigators also were hoping that recent storms might have uncovered evidence.