Wind blows loaded police sniper rifle off roof during parade, New York cops say

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A police sniper rifle plunged from a rooftop into a St. Patrick’s Day parade in Buffalo, New York officials told news outlets.

“This is something that doesn’t happen, can’t happen, nor I’ve never heard of this happening,” Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia told WGRZ.

The rifle fell to a sidewalk just feet from paradegoers at 1:45 p.m. Sunday, March 19, WKBW reported. The rifle did not fire and police quickly retrieved it.

Gramaglia told WGRZ that a police investigation showed a wind gust blew the rifle over, causing it to fall.

“It’s not that it was physically being handled, it wasn’t dropped,” he told the station. Photos show an officer a few steps from the rifle, placed in an “overwatch” position for public safety.

The rifle was mounted on a tripod on the edge of the roof with a weight suspended beneath it, WIVB reported.

An investigation into the accident is continuing, police told WKBW.

“If protocol was followed and yet that still happened then we have to look into other policies and procedures to make sure nothing like this ever happens again,” Gramaglia told WIVB.

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