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 / Updated  / Source: NBC News
By William J. Gorta

A confusing encounter between police and a man in Baltimore almost led to more unrest Monday in the city that has been on edge following weeks of police brutality protests that at times have turned violent.

But a man initially reported to be shot by police — near the site of last week's riot — actually dropped his own gun, causing it to discharge, officials said.

The man was uninjured and and no officers fired at him, said Baltimore police Lt. Col. L. Melvin Russell at a hastily called news conference near the site of the incident at Pennsylvania and West North avenues.

Russell said police security cameras saw a man walking with a handgun, but when officers approached him, he fled.

The handgun fell and it fired one round accidentally, Russell said. No one was hit.

Police called for an ambulance and paramedics examined the yet-to-be-named suspect.

Tensions rose in the neighborhood as reports swirled that the man had been shot by police. Police began to pull back from the intersection later in the afternoon.

The unrest began after the death of Freddie Gray in police custody. Six officers were indicted in relation to his death.

A law enforcement officer uses pepper spray to disperse the crowd at the intersection of North and Pennsylvania Avenues in Baltimore, May 4, 2015.SAIT SERKAN GURBUZ / Reuters