A man shot in an apparent accident by a Salt Lake police officer remains in critical condition while investigators begin looking into the unusual case.

Jerry Herzet, 30, was hit once in the upper chest by a shot from Salt Lake police officer Aram Arslanian's gun after he was pulled over early Wednesday for driving on the wrong side of the road.Investigators say Herzet got out of the car and ran toward Arslanian, who was still in the process of getting out of his car.

"Not knowing what he had, he drew his weapon," said Salt Lake police Lt. Phil Kirk. The officer's patrol car door hit his arm and the gun discharged, hitting Herzet once in the chest, Kirk said.

Herzet remained in critical but stable condition Thursday at University Hospital.

Salt Lake police Lt. Phil Kirk said Wednesday's incident is rare. In his 14 years in the department, he doesn't recall another accidental shooting in which someone was actually hit.

Salt Lake Deputy District Attorney Bud Ellett said he can only think of one. He investigated an accidental shooting involving a South Salt Lake police officer about eight years ago.

The District Attorney's Office won't prosecute someone for an accidental shooting, he said. It's up to an individual department whether or not the officer is disciplined.

"We will look at it and determine whether the drawing of the weapon was appropriate under the circumstances," Ellett said.

Arslanian was placed on paid administrative leave, which is routine in officer-involved shootings. Investigations are being conducted by both the District Attorney's Office and Salt Lake Police Department's internal affairs office.

The incident marks the city's third time a civilian has been shot by a Salt Lake police officer in three months.

Officer Mark Nelson shot prison parolee Steven Johns Sept. 4 after Johns led police on a four-city chase. The Use of Force Board - made up of two citizens and three police officials - determined that Nelson was justified in shooting Johns, who recovered from the shooting.

Juan Carlos Zabala survived when he was shot once by officer Tim Doubt during a SWAT drug raid at a West Salt Lake home Nov. 15.

State law justifies officer shootings when they are deemed "necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury to the officer or another person" or when an officer perceives that type of danger.