Police in Colorado Springs say a Fort Carson soldier set to return to Afghanistan intentionally shot himself in the shoulder to avoid deployment.

They say 26-year-old Robert Murchison and his girlfriend found a parking spot near Penrose-St. Francis main hospital on Wednesday night and then he shot himself in the car.

Murchison and 28-year-old Chasaity Peoples allegedly first told police that they had stopped to help a stranded motorist and that the driver shot him.

Sgt. Jim Meyers says officers were suspicious and continued to question them. He says Peoples finally confessed to what happened.

Murchison is expected to remain hospitalized for the next few days but is expected to recover. He and his girlfriend could be charged with false reporting.