Turkey Hunters Become The Hunted

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The Arizona Game and Fish Department in cooperation with the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating a hunting accident that took place on April 27. One hunter was shot by another hunter in the shoulder with #6 shot from a 12 gauge shotgun, the wounds were not life threatening and the victim was taken to Flagstaff Medical Center for treatment.

Through a preliminary field investigation by both agencies, it was discovered that the hunters were brothers and hunting turkeys over the weekend with another brother; he was not present at the time of the shooting. The hunters involved are in their 40’s and from Surprise, Ariz. They were hunting in Game Management Unit 6A, southeast of Flagstaff near Forest Road 240. The hunters were pursuing and calling turkeys when the shooting accident took place. The hunter who was shot was sitting against a tree and wearing camouflage hunting clothes while the other hunter was about 25 yards downhill from that location.

The hunting accident investigation is pending and will be under review by the Coconino County Attorney’s Office to determine what charges will be filed in this case.

“This accident is just a reminder that hunters need to identify their target and beyond before they shoot and be aware of their surroundings.” says Craig McMullen, Flagstaff Regional Supervisor for Game and Fish. “Hunting continues to be a safe recreational activity, anybody engaged in any activity can become complacent and that is when an accident can happen.” McMullen adds, “Since 2007 we have had 26 hunting accidents reported which includes three fatalities. Our department has an excellent hunter education program and we graduate approximately 2,800 students every year.”

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