Shot police officer showing improvement

Published: Monday, October 7, 2013 at 08:42 AM.

A Morehead City Police Officer’s family said he was alert and off his respirator after suffering gunshot wounds from a training accident this week.

Officer Garret Hardin, 22, has been hospitalized since Wednesday due to wounds he suffered from a gunshot that Morehead City Police Chief Wrenn Johnson said was from an accident during training with Morehead City Police Department members.

Hardin was put in a medically-induced coma by doctors, and Friday afternoon his aunt Lee Anne Flanagan said he was alert, able to recognize people, and talking to his family.

“We are elated,” she said. “Hopefully he will get to be a police officer again. We’ll take it one step at a time.”

Though alert, Hardin remained in critical condition at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville, a hospital spokeswoman confirmed late Friday afternoon.

Johnson held a press conference where she stated the police would not be releasing names of those involved in the accident.

“It’s clear that a mistake was made. We will take responsibility for that,” Johnson said, adding that she was the person “ultimately responsible.”

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