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Canajoharie NY man charged after accidental turkey hunting shooting injures two hunters

May 16, 2011

A Canajoharie man was charged with two felonies Monday after he allegedly accidentally shot two other hunters while turkey hunting in the Town of Middlefield.

Steven D. Houghtaling, 54, 126 Front St., was charged with first- and second-degree reckless endangerment after an investigation by the Otsego County Sheriff’s Office and state Department of Environmental Conservation Police, according to a news release from the Sheriff’s Office. He was arraigned by Village of Cooperstown Judge Leslie Friedman and released, with a scheduled court date next month. If convicted, Houghtaling faces up to seven years in prison, according to the release.

A 47-year old male victim and his 22-year old son were shot in a field off Springfield Hill Road Sunday morning after Houghtaling mistakenly identified them as a turkey and discharged a 12-gauge shotgun round at them, according to the release.

The 47-year old was struck in the leg, chest, neck and facial areas, while his son was struck in the elbow and shoulder, according to the release. The son was taken to M.I.B. Hospital for evaluation, where he was treated and released. The 47-year old victim was later transferred to Albany Medical Center for surgery. The victims’ names were not released, so information on their conditions was not available.

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