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State police investigating trooper who left handgun in park bathroom

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State police officials are investigating an unnamed trooper who left behind a loaded firearm in a public bathroom at Grass Point State Park, near Alexandria Bay, on June 22.

Neither police nor park officials would release the name of the trooper.

The .357-caliber Glock pistol was found in a toilet stall about 3:15 p.m. by a parks cleaning crew worker, according to Randy Simons, public information officer for the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

Mr. Simons said discoveries like the one last week “are rare but not unheard of.”

The department’s troopers are issued .45-caliber Glocks for duty, but troopers have flexibility in choosing a weapon if they are carrying a firearm while off duty.

After finding the weapon, Mr. Simons said, the cleaning worker contacted his supervisor, who in turn contacted the park’s manager, who safely unloaded the weapon. Park police then took possession of the weapon after collecting statements from nearby parties.

Mr. Simons said soon after the park police’s involvement, a call came in to the park’s tollbooth from a man who identified himself as an off-duty state trooper, who said he had accidentally left his handgun behind at the park. He arrived shortly after the call.

The trooper, after explaining the situation and presenting his pistol permit to the park police responders, had his weapon returned to him.

Mr. Simons said park police advised the unnamed trooper to contact his superiors about the incident, which the trooper said he already had done.

The matter is now in the hands of the state police, Mr. Simons said.

On Friday afternoon, Darcy L. Wells, director of public information for the New York State Police, Albany, said that the department was aware of the incident and that it was being investigated.

She said she could not answer any other questions about the department’s internal investigation, including the name of the trooper or where the trooper worked in the state.

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