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In many states, young kids may hunt alone


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I find this insane, and I am a hunter. :silly: I couldn't imagine walking in the woods and running into a 6yr who's hunting alone...:doh:

After Wash. accident, msnbc.com review finds lack of age requirements

By Mike Stuckey

Senior news editor


updated 7:25 a.m. ET, Tues., July 21, 2009

Just before Tyler Kales was led from a Mount Vernon, Wash., courtroom to begin serving his sentence earlier this month, he apologized to the family of his victim.

“All I want to say is how sorry I am,” the reed-thin 15-year-old said in a quavering voice to relatives of Pamela Almli, 54, who died instantly when Kales mistook her for a bear and shot her in the head Aug. 2, 2008, while hunting in the fog in western Washington's Skagit County.

Kales, convicted by a judge of second-degree manslaughter in June, received 30 days in juvenile detention at his July 10 sentencing.

The case highlighted issues about hunting on public land in Washington that were news to some state residents. First, hunting in close proximity to hikers was perfectly legal. Second, there was no requirement for trailhead signs to warn hikers like Almli that there were hunters in the area.

And while Kales was not old enough to have driven himself to the trailhead, in Washington state there is no minimum age for hunting without adult supervision as Kales, then 14, was doing that day with his 16-year-old brother.

Washington is far from alone in allowing children to hunt with firearms on public lands without adult supervision, an msnbc.com review of state hunting regulations found:

  • Seven states — Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Vermont and Washington — set no minimum age for solo hunting. In Texas, kids can hunt alone when they are 9.
  • In Alaska, Louisiana and Tennessee, the minimum age for unsupervised hunting is 10, in Missouri it’s 11, and in nine other states it’s 12.


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