By Danza Johnson/NEMS Daily Journal
Just because there are no laws against firing a weapon in the county doesn’t give people an excuse to be careless, said Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson.
While trying to shoot at a couple of dogs fighting in her yard, a Mooreville woman accidentally shot her neighbor in the leg. The neighbor, who was standing in her garage at the time, was taken to North Mississippi Medical Center and treated for a non-life threatening gunshot wound.
Even though no one was seriously injured in the incident, Johnson said it’s still a serious matter.
“We obviously want people to be careful when discharging firearms because people can really get hurt or killed when things go wrong,” Johnson said. “This was an accident but someone was injured.”
Because there are no laws in the county prohibiting the use of firearms, Johnson said the woman will not face any criminal charges but said the victim could pursue civil action.
“For us to charge her with something we’d have to prove malicious intent,” Johnson said. “This was just a terrible accident.”
It’s not uncommon for hunters to accidentally shoot houses while gunning for deer and other game, Johnson said, but people are rarely hit. Capt. Jerry Carter, of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks, said when discharging a firearm as a hunter or otherwise, people should be sure of the target and what’s behind it.
“Bullets can travel a long way for there is potential for people to be injured while people are shooting at deer or other animals,” he said. “That’s why people should make sure they know where they are and where they are shooting.
“No matter if a crime has been committed or it’s an accident, getting shot is getting shot,” Johnson said.