At least 2 hunters shot during opening weekend of deer season


At least two hunters in Minnesota were shot during the opening weekend for deer season.

Man shot in the abdomen

Robert Schlieman, a 36-year-old from Detroit Lakes, took a gunshot to his abdomen shortly after noon Saturday, the Swift County Sheriff's Office says.

He was with a group in an area north of Holloway when a deer ran between him and the other hunters, according to the sheriff's office. One of the party members thought the deer was far enough away and began shooting – but a slug struck Schlieman in the left side of his abdomen.

He was airlifted to St. Cloud Hospital and is in stable condition. The incident is being investigated.

"When hunting with others in a group, safety is the number one priority," Swift County Sheriff John Holtz said in the release.

Man shot in the leg

A Meeker County commissioner was shot in the leg Sunday afternoon.

Dale Verner Fenrich, of Litchfield, was in rural Litchfield Township at the time, according to an email news release sent by KLFD AM 1410. The 58-year-old was airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

The Meeker and Wright county sheriff's offices are investigating, but the shooting appears to be accidental, the news release says.

Hunting injuries, fatalities

There were just five hunting incidents recorded by the DNR in 2014, according to the agency's statistics page. There were two fatalities that year.

It wad the first time since 1986 the number of incidents recorded was in the single digits. Here's a look at the past decade.

We've reached out to the DNR for more data on this past weekend.

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Authorities in Beltrami County say a 72-year-old hunter fell from his stand in northwestern Minnesota. An 84-year-old hunter in St. Louis County died when his clothing caught fire while he was trying to light a heater in his deer stand.

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A juvenile in central Minnesota is the latest to die in a hunting-related accident, according to the Associated Press. Two others were killed after falling from deer stands, and another hunter succumbed to natural causes. Several others have been hurt from firearms or falls from deer stands.

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