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Report: Ex-prisons boss drank tequila before standoff

Charles Ryan
Posted at 5:27 PM, Jan 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-26 19:38:32-05

TEMPE, AZ — Police reports say former Arizona Corrections Director Charles Ryan consumed a half bottle of tequila on the evening when officers responded to a call at his Tempe home that he had shot himself.

The reports offer a new theory on how Ryan was injured. He is accused of pointing a gun at officers.

Police initially said Ryan had a self-inflicted gunshot wound to one of his hands.

They now say the injury was caused by a less-than-lethal projectile fired by police.

Police say the injury that led officers to the home was a forehead cut likely caused by bullet fragmentation that occurred when an unintentional firearm discharge struck a sink in Ryan’s bathroom.

The Maricopa County Attorney's Office is reviewing possible charges for aggravated assault and unlawful discharge of a firearm.

Ryan was the director of the Arizona Department of Corrections until he retired in 2019 following ABC15's "Unlocked and Unsafe" investigation that exposed cell door issues at Arizona's Lewis Prison.