Deer hunter fatality investigation nears end

Nov 26, 2018

The investigation into a deer hunter’s death is wrapping up. Justin Beutel was shot and killed near Torch Lake by another hunter on opening day. 

Michigan Department of Natural Resources officials say they still can't offer many details about the incident, but evidence points toward a hunting accident. They believe the other hunter mistook Beutel for a deer. Lietenant Jim Gorno, a DNR conservation officer, says Beutel was a relative of the property owner.

Gorno says once the investigation is complete, the Antrim County prosecutor may pursue charges against the man who fired the shot. That could take weeks, but Gorno says in incidents like these charges could range from involuntary manslaughter to trespassing.

Hunting fatalities are rare. In 2017, there was one in Michigan. At least two hunters have been killed in 2018 so far.