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Hunting accident claims Butte MT boy

May 19, 2011

A 15-year-old Butte boy was killed Tuesday evening while hunting near Dewey when a rifle accidentally fired in the pickup truck in which he was riding, said Beaverhead County Sheriff Jay Hansen.

Dakota Griffin was riding with a brother and two friends just before

6:50 p.m. in the Jerry Creek drainage west of Divide when the gun went off, Hansen said in a press release. The party was hunting gophers and black bears in the area. The hunters were driving on a rugged road when the gun discharged inside the cab.

Hansen said Griffin’s brother drove to a bar in Dewey and called for help.

A Beaverhead County sheriff deputy responded and coroners were called from Beaverhead and Silver Bow counties. The incident is under investigation.

Hansen did not return a telephone call seeking further comment on the incident.

Beaverhead County Coroner Ron Briggs said Griffin was shot in the chest with a rifle. He said Griffin was killed instantly.

Griffin was an eighth-grade student at East Middle School, said Larry Driscoll, principal. He said Griffin was easy going and well-liked.

Driscoll had counselors on hand for students who needed to grieve for the loss and said teachers were talking about the tragedy.

“There were about seven or eight counselors available for anybody who needed to talk to somebody,” he said Wednesday afternoon.

Arrangements for the boy are pending at Wayrynen-Richards Funeral Home.

Reporter Nick Gevock may be reached at nick.gevock@mtstandard.com.

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