Travis County Jail staff discovered a loaded gun inside a woman’s bra during a pat-down that hadn’t been previously found by Austin police during her arrest for DWI charges, officials said Tuesday.
Austin interim Police Chief Brian Manley said the department has launched an investigation into how officers missed the weapon during the woman’s DWI arrest May 29.
The incident, which the American-Statesman learned about Tuesday, comes about five months after a teen killed himself in the back of a patrol car with a gun that Austin police hadn’t discovered during his arrest.
“We have training and protocols to address the appropriate techniques of frisking and searching suspects,” Manley said. “The dangers posed by missing a weapon on a suspect cannot be overstated.”
Once the woman was inside the jail’s central booking facility, a female corrections officer performing a routine search found the gun, which was given to arresting officers, sheriff’s spokeswoman Kristen Dark said. Jail staff also notified Austin police officials as part of their protocols.
Officials didn’t identify the woman Tuesday.
In January, 19-year-old Zachary Khabir Anam was arrested for suspected shoplifting at Barton Creek Square mall, and officers apparently missed his gun. An internal affairs investigation into the actions of those officers isn’t yet complete.
The Statesman reported several weeks after the incident that it is rare for a person to arrive in jail with a gun.
Records from the Travis County sheriff’s office show that from 2013 through last year, corrections officers found one gun, one stun gun, 40 knives and four razor blades that went undetected by arresting officers. (Source: mystatesman.com)