Former New York City Detective Anderson Alexander sued the city for putting the defective chair in Brooklyn's 73rd Precinct when he shot himself on Jan. 1, 2002.
City lawyers tried to convince a jury that Alexander was simply clumsy. The jury awarded the former detective $4.5 million in damages.
The 49-year-old retiree was leaning back to put his gun in his waistband when the seat gave way. His finger landed on the trigger and a bullet went into his left knee.
The city said it would appeal the decision.