RENTON, Wash. (AP) — Police said a man was fumbling with a gun inside a theater at The Landing Regal Cinemas Thursday night when the firearm went off, striking a 40-year-old woman sitting in front of him.
She was rushed to Seattle's Harborview Medical Center with a gunshot wound to her torso, police said. Her condition was updated from critical to stable, the hospital said Thursday night.
The gunman left after the shooting, setting off a police search for the suspect. But the 29-year-old man later surrendered, saying it had been an accident.
"He said he had accidentally dropped the gun ... and it went off," a police spokesman said, adding that the man was taken into custody and could face a variety of charges.
The gun discharged while people in the theater were watching the movie "13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi."
"Preliminary accounts indicate that an intoxicated suspect entered one of the theaters and was fumbling with a handgun he had in his possession when it went off, striking another patron seated in front of him," a Renton police news release said shortly after the shooting.
The incident occurred around 8 p.m.
"At about 9:41 p.m., a father called 911 to report that his son was distraught and had told him he dropped his gun at a Renton Landing theater and it had discharged," a later police news release said. "Officers drove to the man’s Newcastle address and were able to confirm that the son was the suspect in tonight’s shooting. He was arrested without incident."