A firearms safety course went awry in Virgina on Saturday when a man shot himself in the hand with a .45-calibre handgun. The bullet then passed through his hand and struck his wife, who was seated nearby, in the leg.

Michael L. Deel, 54, and Michelle K. Deel, 49, both of Roanoke were attending a firearms safety class being taught and hosted by Thomas F. Starke, 57, according to the department.

The sheriff’s office said that Starke told deputies that he had left the room, heard a shot and returned to find the Deels had been shot.

Emergency dispatchers in Bedford County received a call at 12:25 p.m. reporting a shooting on Chapel Woods Drive.

The Bedford County Sheriff’s Office said county rescue units and deputies responded.

The couple was taken by ambulance to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital with injuries that were not considered life-threatening.

The shooting remains under investigation.

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