Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

July 12, 2013

Constable recovering after accidentally shooting self

Ben Tinsley
Jacksonville Daily Progress

CHEROKEE COUNTY —  Respected Precinct 3 Constable Eddie Lee was back at work Thursday after accidentally discharging his weapon Monday and shooting himself in the left  leg – a wound that required immediate surgery.

“I'm going a little slower than I usually do,” the law enforcement veteran said from his office Thursday. “I'm back to work, but not full-work. I'm focusing on the courts and doing the paperwork.”

Lee said was at a friend's home in Tyler Monday when a five-shot Derringer he had in his pocket accidentally fired. He required immediate medical attention.

“Somehow, someway, I accidentally cocked it and put enough pressure on it that it shot me,” Lee explained.

By the sound of Lee's voice over the phone, he still appeared to be in some pain Thursday.

Precinct 3 Commissioner Katherine Pinotti did not immediately return a phone call asking for comment  regarding the incident Thursday.

Lee is described by colleagues as someone who puts 100 percent into his work.

This was not Lee's first time to be injured in recent memory. In February 2008, he was hospitalized following an automobile wreck at the corner of North Bolton and Cherokee streets.

Lee suffered a concussion and bruised ribs in that incident, but he was released from medical care shortly thereafter.

The incumbent constable has been in office since 2006.

On Facebook, Lee is described as a an extraordinary custodian of the law – a “pit bull” really – when it comes to policing illegal dumping and littering.

In 2006, Pct. 1 Constable Lynn Kelley made a request to county commissioners for an increase in travel allowance on behalf of both himself and Lee.

Lee's Precinct 3 office is located in Jacksonville.

“Regardless of what the commissioners decide, I’m still going to do my job,” Kelley told commissioners at the time.  

“All I’m asking is just for a little help. Gasoline is just eating our lunch. I go the extra mile – and I know Eddie does, too.”