François Hollande speech: Police Sniper accidentally opens fire, 2 injured

“J’espère qu’il n’y a rien de grave” – I hope nothing serious happened – those were the words as François Hollande heard a gun shot to his left. Monsieur Hollande was speaking to the public inside a tent, and then continued his speech.

François Hollande is a French politician who used to be the President of the French Republic.

What just had happened was that a French Elite Police stumbled with his sniper rifle and opened fire on by mistake, as he was changing position. 

Two persons were slightly injured, as the stray bullet penetrated the tent and a hit a butler in the leg and a train worker in the foot. Luckily authorities have confirmed that it will stop at minor injuries.

According to the newspaper Sud Ouest, the Police sniper belongs to an elite unit within the Gendarmerie from the City of Poitiers. I am sure he has seen better days and I hope both he and the injured are fine during the circumstances.

We can only speculate, but I would guess the caliber was .308 Win.

As always, please respect the Laws of Gun Safety. Below are the ones that the National Rifle Association provide:

  1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
  2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
  3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.

Link to video and background (French source): HERE and HERE.


Inspector Clouseau jokes are welcome in the comments, or is it too soon?

Eric B

Ex-Arctic Ranger. Competitive practical shooter and hunter with an European focus. Always ready to increase my collection of modern semi-automatic firearms, optics and sound suppressors. Owning the night would be nice too.


  • 22winmag

    Probably jumpy from all the steroids! Ooops wrong country.

  • valorius

    Perhaps it would be wise to engage the manual safety on your rifle before changing positions, eh Pierre?

    • Phillip Cooper

      No. It would be wise to keep the damn safety ON at all damn times till you have an actual target… and keep your booger-hook off the damn boom switch!

      • Wow!

        Safeties don’t make you safer, they make the gun safer. Evidenced by how Glock designs their safeties. Safeties are to be used whenever the gun is out of your immediate control such as slung. Essentially once your hand breaks off the fire control, that safety should be on, and off once you resume.

        Lots of courses use safety on until immediately firing as a liability check to allow an instructor to immediacy identify who has problems following instructions, but this kind of tactic generally isn’t advised as it is more difficult to do with many rifles when left handed, especially in today’s “compliance” situations where you often will spend minutes or hours staring at a threat waiting until they comply or suddenly attack which requires immediate action.

        Finger off the trigger is the primary safety, and as much as people kind of joke about it, it truly is the only thing that makes you safe with a firearm.

        • Phillip Cooper

          Well, so you say, but 6 years as an Infantryman, we kept our weapons on safe till we were actively engaging.
          I realize and agree that the ultimate safety is the finger off the trigger… but when your weapon has a safety, use it, too. It would have prevented this issue, and it is not at all hard to train toward the goal of “safety off then fire”.

          It’s like saying the Glock’s differing grip angle from a 1911 will make you miss your target. No, it will not, if you train with it.

          • Wow!

            I’m not disputing that. Many LEA’s have the same policy, but it is more out of the liability issue. Many will not be using their firearms for fast engagements. That is up to rapid response units specialized to take down dangerous people. The average guy is more likely to ND than he is to be too slow on an up drill.

            Training isn’t my issue. I agree that we can train to anything and we should if we see a need. The issue is that training to disengage before firing does take a bit of time and a lot more time than reasonable if you are shooting left handed (few to no gov issued weapons are truly ambidextrous out of the box), and people should know how to shoot ambidextrously. My example is that there are a lot of situations where we use a rifle that we are sitting and waiting, but need to be able to give an immediate shot in response to a person suddenly acting hostile. Realistically, our OODA loop is slower than the bad guys initiation, so that small hesitation does make a bit of difference in how quickly we can stop someone (not to mention disrupting the sight picture we were maintaining for so long). Likewise, I have seen quite a few people mash a trigger on safe before realizing what happened. In a few people I have also seen that their instinct to take safety off is immediately followed by a urge to pull the trigger, which is also dangerous, similar to people double tapping on a hostage target (which can lead to hitting the hostage in an IRL situation). Of course, that just means they need to train more disengaging the safety and not firing a shot.

            If you told me I had to keep safety on until immediately firing a shot I could do it because I have trained in it. However, to me, it is a lot more reliable to get right when you are taught hand on fire control, safety off, hand off, safety on.

            And thank you for your service.

    • FarmerB

      Nah, as everybody here knows, my finger is my safety!!!

  • FLdeepdiver

    Remington rifle?

    LOL, to soon?

  • Calavera


  • TheNotoriousIUD

    You do not wanna be THAT guy.

    • Moonman45 “Holland immediately surrendered to the attacking party, upon hearing the blitzkrieg of one errant rifle shot”

      • Blake

        Say what you want about French WWII military strategy (which was really French WWI military strategy, combined with crappy political infighting).

        But the GIGN are some of the best special forces in the world:

        “Since its creation, the group has taken part in over 1800 operations, liberated over 600 hostages and arrested over 1500 suspects, losing two members killed in action”

        (& from the photos I’ve seen they mostly use H&K 416 & MP5)

        • Juggernaut

          France had a huge hand in taking Gaddafi out and destabilizing Libya which at the time it happened had a very high standard of living- the French are pretty good at being colonial bullies but up against countries like Germany they haven’t stood a chance.

          • Tassiebush

            An alternate view would be that Gaddafi was a ahole who sponsored huge amounts of terror in Europe and it’s as much on the Libyan populace that they can’t form a decent state in the aftermath of his regime as anything.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Dont bother with this idiot.

            He’s one of the rezident pro-Putin propagandists.

          • Sgt. Stedenko

            Libyans had the highest standard of living in Africa until Hollande and Hillary had Qaddafi sodomized for trying to establish the gold Dinar as an alternative to the Rothschild’s funny money.
            Same thing happened to Hussein for trying to sell Iraqi oil for gold instead of the Rothschild’s USD.
            It might do y’all some good to step outside of your MSM sources of news one in a while.

          • Tassiebush

            He reaped what he sowed. I’m not going to defend a whole heap of foreign policy failures. I personally think a lot of western blood and treasure has been wasted helping aholes fend off other aholes, but fundamentally the guy was a nasty piece of work who was overthrown by his own countrymen and western air support for his opponents was justified by his track record and the actions he was engaged with at the time of his demise.
            There was far more justification for deposing him than Saddam in fact. Those who cry about it now are mostly his allies and cronies.

  • GD Ajax

    This either seems to be a training issue or human error. “I was in a hurry” isn’t an excuse the injured persons and their families will be happy to hear. I’m pretty sure the French have a word for lawsuit that I don’t care to look up.

    • tsubaka

      lawsuit = procès

  • SP mclaughlin

    Hollande is still the president of France, although he is not seeking reelection.

    • Dan


    • durabo

      Vive Marine LePen!

  • Major Tom

    Failed assassination attempt on Le Pen?

    • poakka

      Just a warning no doubt, I don’t think high profile assassinations use guns these days, so crude.

      • Major Tom

        Yeah instead they use suicide bombings, IED’s, and staged riots these days. Or drones.

        So unrefined and primitive to use precision snipers and cloak and dagger operations these days.

        • iksnilol

          Or poison, that one’s classic.

          • Tassiebush

            I always take care around foxy reality TV contestants just in case they try to rub rags with vx drops on my face

  • USMC03Vet

    Got a good deal on a French rifle. Only negligently discharged once. ?

    • Wang Chung Tonight

      Was it dropped after tho?

    • durabo

      The main battle tank the French have is the Leclerc. It has one forward and six reverse gears.

  • Don Ward

    It just goes to show how far the French have sunk since the fall of the Bourbon dynasty. It used to be legal to shoot peasants. Now they have all of their precious Liberty and Egality and Fraternity. Bah, I say! LOUIS the XVI DID NO WRONG!

    • datimes

      Is that Count daMoney with the king?

      • Rodford Smith

        I thought it was Baron A’Grudge.

  • Bucho4Prez

    The end is indeed nigh ,if the culture that produced the poetry in motion that is Marcel Marceau also created this elite operator…

  • Paul

    Quelle domage

    • Nathan Alred

      Quelle fromage

      • Paul

        Now that was just cheesey!

  • lostintranslation

    C’est peut-être……Glock?

  • Bjørn Vermo

    Elite Police?

  • Sam

    Wikipedia was being extremely specific when it described Hollande as “a politician who has been the president of France”… if you had actually clicked on the wikipedia entry or looked anywhere else you’d see that he is CURRENTLY the president of France.

  • Joshua

    was it a Remington 700?

    • BigR

      It probably was a 700!!!!!! Didn’t anyone tell the French about the recall?

  • Blake

    “François Hollande is a French politician who used to be the President of the French Republic.”

    Uh, he’s still the president of France until mid-May…

  • Andrew Dubya


  • Jim

    That school crossing guard position in Poitlers just got filled. Apparently, they don’t have an empty chamber policy on the force. Locked and Loaded comes with a price if you aren’t careful.

  • Jesse

    If the Nazis had dressed like butlers and train workers, the 40’s would’ve ended a lot differently.

  • Wang Chung Tonight

    Wheres the damn video?

    • Tassiebush
      Sorry I couldn’t resist!

      • BigR

        Spare us!!!!

      • BraveNewWhirled

        Which one is Wang?

        • Tassiebush

          I think when they’re trying to pick up they all claim to be Wang

  • Tassiebush

    That was a blast from the past!

  • iksnilol

    Sweet Jesus, how stupid can one be?

    • Phenome

      Join a “Tactical Response” shooting course. They have that dropping-the-weapon-stuff practically invented.

    • Wow!

      I’m thinking it was a trigger adjusted too light and went off from a bump. One reason I don’t like light triggers, I like clean and short break triggers. Lots of LE snipers often raise their bolt handle to prevent the striker from ever possibly going forward when you don’t wan’t to fire yet.

  • Evan

    I guess now they can’t say that rifle has NEVER been fired and only dropped once.

  • nammna

    That seems too crude even for turkey, just a lone wolf as they say. But regarding lepen, It’s called ‘escalation of force’, if you escalate too quickly you create power vacuums that can be exploited by even worse forces. Playing these games in France, one of the most productive nations in the world is not advisable, this isn’t Iraq or afghanistan.

  • durabo

    It was a NEGLIGENT discharge, not an “accidental” one. I tell my CCW students that the only accidental discharge I ever experienced in my 79 years was the first time I had sex. That could have had consequences, too.

    • Gunsmith

      Could have been a “premature” discharge!

      • durabo

        Wees zee French? Nevair! Zey weethhold zer fire until zee end.

        • Gunsmith


  • Colonel K

    Rule #1: Keep the MUZZLE pointed in a safe direction.

    • BraveNewWhirled

      It was pointed safely at the ground. Unfortunately the ground was further away than he initially believed.

  • Kazak American

    Vichy French Socialist Hollandaise Sauce for brains must have thought the Resistance returned to throw him out on his butt ? Maybe he just thought the Cossacks returned to occupy Paris again ?
    Do love my 700.
    Of course, pilot error will get you every time.

  • scaatylobo

    Sadly,being the perfect person that y’all know me to be [ snicker ].
    I can only say that WHY THE FK was the safety not on = PERIOD.
    I am not the first to point that out,AND if it actually was a Remington 700 —– UH OH.
    Many will have a ND/ AD in their lifetime,BUT not on an “elite” team and NOT in public.
    Sacre bleu. !

  • Diver6106

    I think the President should be glad that he was not panning head shots thru his scope when it went off. Especially not his!!! There is far too much executive security where it is not needed – just ‘in case.’

  • LetsTryLibertyAgain

    I’m really sick of the rules of firearms safety applying to everyone but the police.


  • dntmkmecomoverther

    …il est a merde tete!

  • BigR

    Obviously, their sniper “AIN’T” that elite!!!!! Typical French! We had to bail them out in two different wars, three if you count Vietnam!

  • ChiptheBarber

    Wow! Just saw this article. The French aren’t used to HOLDING ON to their loaded weapons. They usually just throw them down and run.