Police shoot, detain woman after gun incident at Billings Clinic

A 36-year-old woman with a loaded gun was shot by a police officer responding to a weapons complaint Oct. 16 at the Billings (Mont.) Clinic emergency department, the Billings Gazette reported Oct. 17.

In a news release obtained by Becker's, the Billings Police Department said it responded to a complaint involving an individual with a loaded gun threatening to shoot herself at Billings Clinic Hospital on the evening of Oct. 16. Upon arrival, police say the woman fired one round and officers found her with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

When officers approached, police say the woman picked up the handgun and ignored officers' commands to stop. An officer then fired one round and struck the individual. 

"As officers arrived on scene the suspect fired one round. One officer fired at the suspect and suspect was struck and then taken into custody," the Police Department said in an Oct. 16 tweet. 

The woman was treated by medical staff and survived her wounds, according to the Billings Gazette. No charges have been filed and the officer who fired at the woman has been placed on administrative leave amid an investigation. No one else was injured in the incident. 

Hospital leaders praised staff for their response efforts and said the incident did not disrupt patient care. When the woman arrived at the emergency department threatening suicide, staff closed off the unit and moved other patients. 

"They followed the protocols and did the right thing," Jamiee Belsky, MD, medical director of the Billings Clinic emergency department, told the Gazette. "They got themselves safe, they got the patients safe and they took care of the patients." 

Staff had a several-hour debriefing once the area was deemed safe. The discussion focused on ensuring ED staff were given support after the incident, Dr. Belsky said. She also told CBS affiliate KTVQ that all staff wear security badge buttons, which had already been put into use and streamlined safety efforts during the incident.

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