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Safe Hunting?

At Least 5 Men Die Since Start Of Deer-Hunting Season

One Death Attributed To Accidental Shooting

12:43 p.m. EST December 3, 2003

At Least 3 Hunters Die In Poconos Monday

At least three hunters collapsed and died in the woods of the Poconos on Monday -- which was the first day of the deer-hunting season in Pennsylvania.

State police at Lehighton, Pa., identified one hunter found in the woods off Route 903 in Penn Forest Township as William Hoffman Jr., 57, of Jim Thorpe, Pa.

The Carbon County Coroner's Office said search and rescue crews in Nesquehoning, Pa., discovered another hunter, Mike Hrinda Jr., 67, of Nesquehoning on Monday night after he failed to return home from his hunt.

In Northampton County, police said Larry Rissmiller Sr., 66, of Bushkill Township, Pa., collapsed while hunting with his son in Moore Township. Larry Rissmiller Jr. administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation, but could not revive his father.

The county coroners said all three men appeared to have died of natural causes.

Hunter Found Dead In Fulton County

In Fulton County, a wildlife conservation officer said an Erie man was critically injured when a fellow hunter accidentally shot him in the leg and the bullet exited through his back.

The officer said Gerald Weaver was hunting Tuesday with three friends in a dense wooded area of Girard Township, near Erie, when a deer ran through the group.

A hunter, whom officials would not identify, shot at the deer, missed, and hit Weaver, who was later taken to Hamot Medical Center in Erie.

Meanwhile, state police said Ronald Tarner, 60, was reported missing after he did not return from hunting. Officials found him dead of natural causes in a wooded area of Union Township.

Hunter, 86, Found Safe

An 86-year old hunter was found safe and sound Tuesday after spending Monday night lost in the woods near Rickets Glen State Park.

Rescue crews found Mahlen Michael of Lancaster, Pa., Tuesday afternoon after he spent almost 24 hours in the subfreezing weather.

Michael was checked out at a Williamsport area hospital and is in good condition.

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