Letters to the Editor

Olean Woman Shot in the Stomach by Crossbow Bolt While Driving Her Car

Ronda asks that you put in your name and address and send to your legislators.

Ronda Roaring, Executive Director
571 South Danby Rd.
Spencer, NY 14883
[email protected]  

April 23, 2003

The Ithaca Journal
123 W. State St.
Ithaca, NY 14850


On September 10, 1995, an Olean woman was shot in the stomach by a crossbow bolt while driving her car. Although the crossbow is not a legal weapon in this state, if hunters get their way, that will change.

The crossbow is a cross between a longgun and a longbow. It has a gun-type stock, can be outfitted with a spotting scope, and can be left in a cocked position while the hunter moves around. It has a similar range to that of a shotgun.

The crossbow can be transported in a vehicle while cocked and, because of its small size, brought quickly out the vehicle's window so that the hunter need never leave the vehicle to make a kill. For this reason, and because the crossbow is basically a silent weapon, it is likely to become the poaching weapon of choice.

When the trigger of a crossbow is pulled, the bow propels the arrow, called a bolt, at speeds of up to 200 mph. As with longbow arrows, the wound of a crossbow bolt does massive damage to its victim who dies from hemorrhage and loss of blood.

Because the crossbow can remain in a cocked position with no effort from the hunter and because release is accomplished by pulling a trigger, the crossbow takes less strength and skill to operate.

Deer hunters who like working in groups and conducting deer drives would find the crossbow appealing. Longbow hunters must be close to their quarry, which is why longbow hunters never hit other hunters. Crossbow hunters can be hundreds of feet away from their quarry.

Although the DEC is mandated to provide New Yorkers with recreational opportunities, the law does not imply that hunters should be allowed to use anything and everything to make a kill.

If legislators don't hear from constituents who are opposed to legalizing this weapon, they will think you don't care. Please take the time to write.

A list of Assembly members can be found at .

Senators are listed at .


Ronda Roaring, Executive Director
New York State Coalition for Animals

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