Man injured by neighbor's target shooting

AP Photo/Wilson Ring

I don’t know that I’ve ever met a gun owner who didn’t want a patch of land big enough to put in their own shooting range. That’s kind of living the dream, after all. Just imagine, going outside and popping of a number of rounds anytime you want, without having to worry about the range’s hours or silly rules like no rapid fire or not drawing from the holster.


But for those who have the land, there needs to be caution. After all, rounds travel, which is why proper ranges have things like backstops.

And one man’s injury is the result of someone shooting target practice while not having one.

A 51-year-old Wisconsin man was injured after being shot by neighbors who were target practicing without a proper backstop, according to authorities.

Deputies with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office were called to a report of a shooting in Wilton on Sunday shortly after 7 p.m., roughly 45 miles east of La Crosse.

Investigators determined four people were target shooting at a neighboring residence without a proper backstop, allowing the bullets to travel across the roadway and endanger people from almost 1,000 yards away.

The four men were arrested and booked into the county jail.

Look, folks, we can’t have this. We can’t tolerate it or pretend this wasn’t a huge screw-up on the part of the four men.

You do not shoot without a backstop. Do. Not. Do. It. The backstop is there to catch the rounds you fire. It stops them from, oh, I don’t know, maybe going nearly 1,000 yards and hitting someone who wasn’t doing anything to warrant being shot.


And worse, this is the kind of stupidity anti-gunners think of when they start talking about how awful gun owners are. Stop giving ammunition to the other side, for crying out loud.

Was this a mistake versus maliciousness? Probably. It doesn’t matter, though, because these four managed to shoot recklessly in what they called target practice and manage to hit some innocent person nearly 1,000 yards away.

On every level, this was stupid.

“Don’t be so harsh. You said it was a mistake.”

Yeah, it was. But mistakes don’t come without consequences, and if me ripping these guys a new one for being so colossally stupid is the worst they get, they’re lucky. As they’re likely facing charges and I don’t have their names, they have bigger concerns right now.

What they don’t have is any sympathy from me.

If these were kids who didn’t know any better, I might be willing to consider this as just not knowing better. These were apparently grown men who should have known the purpose of a backstop while shooting.


And let’s be honest, Wisconsin isn’t exactly the most pro-gun state in the nation. Crap like this isn’t going to help in the least.

If you’re fortunate enough to have the land to shoot on and you want your own shooting range, don’t be stupid and irresponsible. I don’t care what the law might say, put in the backstop and take care to consider what’s beyond that range anyway, just to be careful.


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