Judge Bounces Lawsuit Filed By DEA Agent Who Shot Self In Leg During Gun Demo
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by the DEA agent who shot himself in the leg during a gun safety demonstration and later became a punch line when video of the incident surfaced online and was widely broadcast on TV.
Agent Lee Paige, 50, contended that the leak of the video--for which he blamed DEA officials--amounted to a violation of his privacy rights. However, in a December 29 order, Judge Jack Shanstrom rejected that claim and dismissed Paige’s U.S. District Court complaint in its entirety. Paige, who worked undercover, claimed that the video’s distribution resulted in him becoming the “target of jokes, derision, ridicule, and disparaging comments” everywhere he went.
Paige, who sued the DEA nearly five years ago, shot himself during an April 2004 presentation to parents and their children at the Orlando Youth Minority Golf Association in Orlando, Florida. As seen in the above video, which was shot by an audience member who later turned his Mini-DV tape over to DEA agents, Paige displayed a handgun to the crowd and remarked, “I am the only one in the room professional enough, that I know of, to carry this Glock 40.”
It was at that point, of course, that Paige shot himself in the leg.
He appeared ready to continue the demonstration--and even had an assistant hand him another weapon to display--but the murmuring crowd’s unease (one audience member shouted, “Put it down”) brought that plan to an end.