Pittsfield officer whose gun was apparently used in shooting to step down

Authorities investigate the July shooting at the Cromwell Avenue home of Pittsfield Police Officer Miles Barber, who is under criminal investigation in the incident.

PITTSFIELD — A city police officer whose service weapon apparently was used in a shooting in his home is under criminal investigation, and will step down by the end of the month, according to Pittsfield Police Chief Michael Wynn.

Officer Miles Barber, an 18-year veteran of the force, had been placed on paid administrative leave following a July 18 incident at his home in which a female was found suffering from a gunshot wound, believed to be self-inflicted.

Barber, who was off-duty at the time, called in the shooting at 3:09 p.m., saying he had come home and found the female shot.

At the time of the incident, Wynn said the department believed the .40 caliber Glock pistol belonged to the department and was issued to Barber. The Pittsfield Police Department worked with the Berkshire State Police Detective Unit and the Massachusetts State Police Firearms Identification Section to reach the determination.

State law stipulates firearms must be locked when not in use so that they can't be used by "any person other than the owner or other lawfully authorized user."

Wynn said Wednesday the department conducted an administrative investigation into the incident and that a separate criminal investigation is being conducted by the state police.

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That administrative investigation led to a request for a civil service hearing to determine "appropriate discipline," Wynn said Wednesday.

He said the hearing was canceled when Barber chose to voluntarily leave the department.

That separation will be effective Oct. 28, according to Wynn. He referred questions regarding the criminal investigation to the Berkshire District Attorney's Office.

The DA's office did not immediately respond to questions on the matter, including whether any potential charges are pending and an update on the victim.

Bob Dunn can be reached at bdunn@berkshireeagle.com, at @BobDunn413 on Twitter and 413-496-6249.