EAST PRAIRIE - Following a complete investigation in cooperation with Mississippi County Sheriff Larry Turley and his department and the East Prairie Chief of Police Danny Lafferty, the death of Christopher Johnson, 26 of East Prairie, was ruled accidental by Mississippi County Coroner, Terry A. Parker.
According to Parker, around 6:50 p.m. Sunday, Johnson, who was described as despondent, was inside his residence at 412 Second St. in East Prairie and mishandled a .9 mm handgun. The gun discharged and Johnson was shot in the lower right abdominal area.
He was transported to the Missouri Delta Medical Center at Sikeston where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
Johnson, a newly hired police officer with the East Prairie Police Department was not on duty at the time of the incident.