Accidental Shooting: Man Treats Head Wound From .22 Rifle With Neosporin, Survives

Jonathan Vankin - Author
By

Aug. 23 2017, Updated 4:40 a.m. ET

An accidental shooting in Alaska gave rise to an unusual method of gunshot wound first aid, especially considering the victim shot himself in the head. A man in Anchor Point didn’t think a bullet wound to the head was worth a trip to the hospital, so he treated himself with an over-the-counter remedy for five days.

James Doppler, 43, was “playing around with” a.22 caliber rifle on Saturday, May 10, when the gun went off and he accidentally shot himself in the head, according to Beth Ipsen, a spokesperson for the Alaska State Troopers.

But to Doppler, the accidental shooting was no big deal. He just grabbed some Neosporin antibiotic ointment out of the medicine cabinet and smeared on his head wound. There was no one else with him at the time of the accidental shooting.

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Despite Head Wound, Accidental Shooting Victim Thought He Was OK

When Doppler’s girlfriend saw him next, and saw that he had accidentally shot himself, she insisted that he go to the hospital right away. But Doppler still refused. He just kept slathering Neosporin on the wound and believed he was okay.

But he soon began feeling not as okay. Still, it took Doppler five days before the accidental shooting to the head affected him strongly enough to convince the man that he might want to seek medical help.

Doppler finally checked himself into South Peninsula Hospital in Homer on Thursday, May 15, where doctors diagnosed the wound from his accidental shooting of his own head as “serious, but not life-threatening.”

Alaska State Troopers were called to the hospital in investigate the shooting, and that’s when they determined that it was accidental, due to Doppler’s “negligently handling” the.22 rifle. The Alaska State Troopers spokesperson Ipsen said she could not discuss exactly what Doppler’s head wound symptoms were because patient privacy laws prohibit it.

Three Other Accidental Shooting Incidents May 10

In other accidental shooting news from May 10: A 16-year-old in Longmont, Colorado, was arrested for accidentally shooting another teen in the buttocks at a house party with a stolen handgun, after he whipped out the gun and declared, “I can’t wait to sell it!”

He then placed the gun on a table and it went off.

In Harleton, Texas, 26-year-old Ivan Dolley died after an accidental shooting left him with a single bullet to his abdomen. According to police, someone was handing him a gun barrel first, when it accidentally fired.

And in another accidental shooting the same day — this one in Dunbarton, New Hampshire — Glen Ranfos, 58, was treated for a wound after he was shot by his hunting partner, Kenneth Ranfos, who mistook him for a turkey.

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