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Two Hunters Killed in Accidental Shootings

A 57-year-old female hunter from Hosford was accidentally shot and killed while hunting with her husband around 10 a.m. on Feb. 7 in Liberty County. Stan Kirkland, of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), said it appears Pansey Langston’s death was an accident.

The Liberty County Sheriff’s Office reported that a group of at least six hunters were hunting on private land near Hosford in Liberty County around noon when Langston was shot in the upper chest. Langston reportedly had just stepped out of the vehicle as another hunter spotted a deer running ahead of dogs near an intersection in Blue Creek Hunting Club off Blue Creek Road along the Ochlockonee River.

The 36-year-old from Quincy hunter could not see the couple or their vehicle due to thick foliage between them and reportedly fired two shots from approximately 270 feet away. Hunting club members and the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office performed CPR on the victim until Liberty County EMS responded to the scene, and Langston was flown to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

FWC officials reported that the shooter knew Langston personally and “is devastated” over the accident. Kirkland said the hunter was using 3-inch magnum “000” buckshot and investigators have recovered 17 of the 20 pellets (10 in each shot).

Authorities say they aren’t expecting any criminal charges in the case, but will sit down with the state attorney’s office to review the incident, as is customary in such cases.

This was the fifth hunting-related fatality and 26th hunting incident to occur in Florida during the 2008-09 hunting season, according to FWC Statewide Hunter Safety Coordinator Bill Cline.

Florida had three hunting-related fatalities last year (2007-08) and only 13 hunting-related incidents. The current period – which continues to June 30 – is already the second most deadly season since mandatory hunter education classes began in 1991 (tied with 1992-93 and 1994-95 with five fatalities).

Only the 1996-97 season had more fatalities (6). The total number of hunting incidents this year (26) is fourth-highest since 1991 and double last season’s 13. Florida had only one hunting fatality in each year for a four-year period from 2003-04 to 2006-07 and not more than one fatality since the 1996-97 season, including none in 2000-01 and 2002-03.

Also, a Putnam County man died after being hit with a blast from a 12-gauge shotgun around 10 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 25 while hunting with a family acquaintance on private property in Putnam County.

The victim was Eric Kisielewski, 25, of Orange Springs. According to the hunting partner, the two men were hunting for hogs on Sunday morning and walking through heavy brush when the 12-gauge shotgun discharged.

The hunting partner was carrying the gun while Kisielewski walked ahead of him. The double-ought (00) buckshot hit Kisielewski, mortally wounding him. Investigators with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) say there have been no arrests and believe this was a hunting accident.

FWC is leading the ongoing investigation with assistance from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.