Bollinger County man in stable condition after accidental shooting

Sunday, December 6, 2009

MARBLE HILL, Mo. -- A Bollinger County resident is in the hospital after accidentally shooting himself Thursday evening.

Bollinger County Sheriff Leo McElrath said Ronnie Burton, 57, who lives near Scopus, Mo., had surgery Friday morning after a .45-caliber gun he carries in a belt holster discharged accidentally. The bullet went through his left hand, McElrath said, leaving a wound hole the size of a golf ball, then went through his left femur. Burton also lost a lot of blood, the sheriff said, but as of Friday was in stable condition.

The sheriff's department received the call around 6:45 p.m. Thursday. McElrath said Burton, who owns the Archery Shop in Marble Hill, was at home and as he removed the gun from his holster the hammer caught on the arm of a chair he was sitting on and caused the weapon to fire.

"He's in very bad shape," McElrath said. "The bullet went through his fingers and shattered his femur."

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