Hunter shot, killed by companion
By: News Tribune staff, Superior Telegram
An Oliver man was shot and killed by his hunting companion Monday evening in an accident in the Town of Superior.
The shooting victim is Garrett M. Carr, 27, of Oliver. His hunting companion was Michael F. Thomson, 31, of Superior, Douglas County Sheriff Thomas Dalbec said Tuesday in a news release.
Emergency crews were called to the area of County Road W and Barnes Road near the Minnesota-Wisconsin border just after 5 p.m. Monday. Police said Carr died at the scene.
Dave Zebro, head warden for the Spooner region including the Douglas County area, said the report so far indicates that there were deer in the area of the two hunters and that Thomson fired at one of the deer but missed, with the bullet striking Carr in the head.
Zebro said at least three conservation officers investigated the shooting Tuesday night and Wednesday, attempting to gather evidence at the scene and re-create the event. He said all evidence so far points to a tragic accident. A final report likely won’t be available for several weeks, he said.
“It was low light, but still legal shooting hours. But as the light dims, the onus is really on the shooter to make sure of his shot,” Zebro said. “Unfortunately, more times than not, when we have a two-party accident like this they know each other very well, friends or family in the same hunting party. That’s why we say pick your hunting partner like your life depends on it.”
While Carr was wearing blaze orange clothing on his body, Zebro said the victim was wearing a dark colored hat. Wisconsin law requires that if hunters wear a hat it be at least 50 percent blaze orange.
“Not to blame the victim, and we don’t know if would have made any difference, but that’s why we have the blaze orange law,” Zebro noted.
“If there is any good to come out of this it’s that it’s a reminder to all hunters to wait that extra second and be absolutely sure of your target. Be absolutely sure what you are shooting at and what’s behind it, because that bullet is eventually going to stop somewhere,” Zebro said. “No deer is worth someone getting hurt or killed.”
The accident was the second firearms related death so far during Wisconsin’s ongoing 9-day firearms deer season that runs through Sunday.