MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The tragedy occurred when police officers were simulating lethal force in a live role play, the NBC2 News broadcaster said. Local police department chief Thomas Lewis said there were a total of 35 people present during the exercise and two of them were randomly chosen for participation.
Punta Gorda Police say 35 were participating in the Citizens Academy were woman was shot. pic.twitter.com/TQqXGg8w28— Carlos Munoz (@ReadCarlos) August 10, 2016
The victim, identified as Mary Knowlton, was "mistakenly struck with a live round," according to Lewis.
"I am devastated for everyone involved in this unimaginable event. If you pray, please pray for Mary's family, and for the officers who were involved. Everyone involved in this accident is in a state of overwhelming shock and grief," Lewis was quoted as saying by NBC2 News.
Women accidentally shot dead with live round during "shoot/don't shoot" role play scenario with Punta Gorda (Fl) PD pic.twitter.com/kHpwXIJkTL— Νia4TRUMP (@nia4_trump) August 10, 2016
The Police Academy organized eight-week course that included interactive classes, on-site visits and facility tours in order to "develop future leaders" through well-informed and civically-engaged residents, according to the city’s website.