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Roseau County Sheriff's Office: Deputy accidentally shot wife in thigh

The wife of a Roseau County (Minn.) deputy was expected to return home Wednesday evening after being treated in Grand Forks for an accidental gunshot wound, Chief Deputy Terry Bandemer said.

Bandemer said a bullet from a hunting rifle struck Michelle Cossentine, 27, on the top of her thigh as she sat in the passenger seat of a Chevrolet Suburban shortly before 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

Her 29-year-old husband, Deputy Nathan Cossentine, was checking to see if the gun was loaded when his pinky or part of his clothing hit the trigger, the chief deputy said.

"He had it laying across his lap, and it discharged," Bandemer said. "The bullet went across his wife's lap, right across her thigh."

Bandemer said the couple had just returned to their home south of Roseau when the gun went off. They had been deer hunting earlier, he said.

Just after the shooting happened, Deputy Cossentine reported to the sheriff's office that he was taking his wife to LifeCare Medical Center in Roseau, authorities said.

She was later taken to Altru Hospital.

The bullet hit only skin and fatty tissue, and the greatest concern was keeping the wound free of infection, Bandemer said.

The sheriff's department is investigating the incident.