A security guard at an Oklahoma gun show was captured on video pointing a loaded firearm at a crowd and accidentally shooting a retired deputy.
Brian Pounds—a volunteer cop for Collinsville police—was working at the Wanenmacher’s Tulsa Arms Show last Saturday when he unzipped a handgun from its case and examined it for a few seconds before pulling the trigger.
The shocking footage shows Pounds raising the gun and hitting Rick Treadwell, a former Tulsa sheriff’s sergeant, who was working at the security check-in table. The expo, which bills itself as the world’s largest gun show, does not permit loaded weapons.
Treadwell told The Daily Beast the bullet ricocheted off a wall before striking his middle finger. It was the first time Treadwell, who has fired his weapon four times in the line of duty, has ever been shot himself.
“I was looking on my cellphone and I heard a gunshot and it felt like a hammer hitting my finger,” Treadwell recalled of the incident, which was first reported by The Frontier. “I dropped my cellphone and yelled that I’d been shot.”
Treadwell said he initially declined to press charges against Pounds, a former Tulsa County reserve deputy who worked under disgraced former Sheriff Stanley Glanz, because Pounds said the gun discharged on its own.
“He had a surprised look on his face when he looked up,” Treadwell said. “He walked over to me and said, ‘I didn’t know it was loaded. I didn’t even pull the trigger—it just went off by itself.’”
But after Treadwell saw surveillance footage of the incident, he asked the Tulsa County district attorney to pursue a criminal case. And on Friday, Pounds was charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct with a firearm.
“He squeezed the trigger,” Treadwell said, adding, “A child should know not to point a gun at somebody or point it at the building and squeeze the trigger. He pointed in the general direction of the public area.
“If he had been a little bit more to his right, he would have shot the officer who was seated next to me,” Treadwell said.
Messages left for Pounds were not returned by press time.
It’s unclear why Pounds handled the loaded weapon: a .22-caliber pistol that Treadwell says belonged to another security officer and was placed on a chair.
Pounds, a 48-year-old county appraiser, was a reserve deputy with the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office from April 2002 to November 2005, a sheriff’s spokesman said.
The Tulsa sheriff’s volunteer deputy program made national headlines in 2015, when Bob Bates shot and killed an unarmed man during an undercover gun bust. Bates said he accidentally grabbed his gun instead of his taser when he fatally blasted Eric Harris.
A spokesman for the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office did not respond to questions on why Pounds left the reserve program.
Capt. Matthew Burke of the Collinsville Police Department said Pounds is on temporary suspension pending an internal probe.
Pounds—who donned a polo shirt with the word “police” on the back—wasn’t on duty for Collinsville at the weapons expo, Burke said.
“We do not allow our reserves to work on our behalf outside of city limits,” Burke told The Daily Beast, adding that the polo shirt was not property of Collinsville PD. “It is my understanding that he has his own private security license.”
Pounds has volunteered for up to two years and has never faced disciplinary issues, Burke said. “This is an unfortunate incident,” Burke told The Daily Beast. “He’s been a good employee for us, and we’re going to treat him fairly in this situation.”
Still, it’s not the first time Pounds made local news.
According to The Frontier, Pounds was among six Tulsa County reserve deputies involved in the March 2005 shooting of a man outside their jurisdiction. The volunteer officers accompanied at least seven full-time deputies to the operation.
Pounds and the deputies—which included county assessor Ken Yazel—traveled to Okmulgee County to arrest Danny Foutch.
Foutch had escaped from Tulsa County undersheriff Tim Albin while wearing handcuffs and reportedly mailed them back to the sheriff’s office, The Frontier reported.
One deputy used a loudspeaker to draw Foutch out of a trailer, and Foutch allegedly ran toward Yazel and Pounds, an incident report stated.
Police said Foutch knocked Pounds to the ground and tried to wrest away his gun. In response, Yazel shot Foutch in the buttocks with a .30-caliber rifle.
Yet a Tulsa County sheriff’s investigator told The Frontier that when he arrived to the scene, “the whole thing didn’t make sense.”
Mark Williamson said investigators didn’t find shell casings nearby, and that Foutch’s fingerprints and DNA weren’t on the gun.
Williamson retired after that incident but sent a letter to Foutch and his attorney expressing his concerns about the case, The Frontier reported.
For his part, Yazel said a grand jury investigated the shooting but declined to return indictments, according to The Frontier.
Okmulgee County’s sheriff Eddy Rice, however, wanted the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation to review the incident, the Tulsa World reported.
A memo obtained by the World indicated that Rice called the Foutch shooting a “messed-up deal.” Rice also told the Tulsa sheriff’s office that its volunteer deputies “would not be allowed to operate” in his county.
At the time, Foutch’s lawyer Brian Rayl told the World that Foutch denied grabbing Pounds’s gun or even running into him. “He told me he was not only running away but he was 10 yards away from forest or thick brush when he got shot from behind,” Rayl said. “He said he never touched a deputy.”
Treadwell’s attorney, Dan Smolen, tied the gun-show incident to Pounds’s training with the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office.
“This is the same Reserve Deputy Program that brought us Bob Bates and his excessive and patently unreasonable use of deadly force on Eric Harris. This is the same Reserve Deputy Program that allowed Ken Yazel, the Tulsa County Assessor, to wield a gun during a task force operation and shoot another unarmed man, Danny Foutch,” Smolen said in a statement.
“Mr. Pounds is an unfortunate reminder that the legacy of ineptitude, lawlessness and calamity continues to this day,” he added. “When will it end?”