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Posted at 11:03 AM ET, 12/ 1/2009

Along the Potomac, an accident waiting to happen

By editors

By Paula Dubberly

The fatal shooting of Jessica Goode by a hunter while she was on public land underscores that hunting accidents can and do happen. That’s why it is frightening to find a duck blind along the Potomac River about 10 feet from Riverside Park off the George Washington Parkway, and why it is astounding Fairfax County cannot outlaw duck hunting in popular kayak and fishing areas in and along the Potomac such as Dyke Marsh.

If the horrific death of Ms. Goode can happen in rural hunting country, how long before an accidental hunting death occurs here in suburbia?

By editors  | December 1, 2009; 11:03 AM ET
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Paula, you ask "If the horrific death of Ms. Goode can happen in rural hunting country, how long before an accidental hunting death occurs here in suburbia?"

Well, why don't you do a bit of research and find out when was the last time a non-hunter was accidently shot and killed by a duck hunter along the Potomac in the DC area?

Since it's NEVER HAPPENED I suppose you don't really have much to worry about after all - you agree?

Posted by: Davidsonville | December 1, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

There's a difference between deer hunting (shooting a rifle at a low angle) and duck hunting (shooting a shotgun at a higher angle) in terms of range and lethality.

Still, hopefully whatever is going on in Fairfax is scrupulously regulated and frequently reviewed for zoning.

Posted by: Booyah5000 | December 1, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Accidents used to be pretty common around DC, Md. and Va. I remember there'd be a number of them each year, simply near where I lived as a teenager in what is now part of Columbia Maryland. A bullet hit our house one year. I had acquaintances who were shot. They'd never report it, it was taken for granted as a hazard of hunting season. These accidents stopped when hunting with impunity in Maryland was made illegal. I imagine it's the same in Virginia.

They stopped at that site because it was donated as a nature preserve and wild-life refuge. It's been a long time since it was legal to hunt there. How it got to be opened up to hunting in the first place is itself a scandal.

Now that it is opened up to hunting again, this argument, that they've "never" happened before, won't last long. I guess the second amendment right, pioneered by Dick Cheney, to shoot people as long as as its an "accident" is still in force.

Posted by: chris_holte | December 1, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

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