A shooting at a holiday gathering of off-duty Prince George’s County police officers was accidental “jackassery,” Chief Hank Stawinski said in a statement Saturday, and eight of the 11 police officers who were suspended after the incident are back on duty. Three officers remain suspended with pay as the investigation into last week’s incident continues.

The 11 officers were at a party at a private home in Brandywine on Dec. 15. At one point, one of the officers was handling a privately owned weapon, and it discharged, the police said.

The bullet hit the officer in the hand, then ricocheted and grazed another officer’s leg, the department said. Both officers were airlifted to hospitals by helicopter and released the next day. The statement said officials believe there was no ill intent involved.

But Stawinski said the incident was cause for concern.

“I was relieved when it was confirmed that neither of the officer’s injuries was serious, but I was and remain disappointed in the jackassery that led to this incident, which has negatively impacted the injured and involved officers, their families, and our community,” the chief said in a statement. “I expect the women and men of this institution to serve as examples to others.”

Two of the three officers who are suspended are assigned to the Emergency Services Team. The third is assigned to the Bureau of Investigations.

The department has not said whether the home where the shooting occurred was owned by an officer or whether there were civilians at the party. Nor have officials said whether alcohol was involved.

“It was a holiday party,” spokeswoman Jennifer Donelan said last week. “I’m not going to be naive and assume that there wasn’t, but . . . whether or not alcohol was involved is definitely part of that investigation.”

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