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Sporting clays event to boost local Boy Scouts

SHOOTING — Here's a classy event, a good time and a chance to hone shotgunning skills on the fascinating sporting clays course at Double Barrel Ranch south of Mica Peak.

What: 5th Annual Sporting Clays for Boy Scouts, with competitoin, food, prizes.

When: Sept. 14.

Where: Double Barrel Ranch south of Mica Peak

Who: Open to single shooters and teams, sponsored by Inland Northwest Council of Boy Scouts.

Pre-register: 325-4562; www.nwscoutshoot.org

Write-In Jokes re: Shooting Simpson

Well, that’s one way to launch a campaign. Buhl resident Jack Wayne Chappell announced his intent to run as a write-in candidate for Congress, with a press release implying he wants to shoot Congressman Mike Simpson. In the lengthy announcement, Chappell acknowledges his bid is less about politics and more about publicity, though he did have criticisms for Simpson. He ended with this: “So here’s the famous original quote, Mike, written especially for you. To wit: ‘You can’t even be a duck in this world without somebody wanting to shoot you.’” Chappell ran against Nicole LeFavour in the May Democratic primary, calling his campaign a “political cartoon” and acknowledging that he ran mostly to drum up support for Simpson primary challenger Chick Heileson. LeFavour won with 84 percent of the vote/Melissa Davlin, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question: Congressman Simpson's campaign isn't taking Chappell's words seriously. Should it do so?

Appleseed Project sets marksmanship clinic at Fernan Gun Club

SHOOTING – Another in a series of rifle marksmanship clinics is being offered at the Fernan Gun Club on July 14-15.

The clinics are sponsored by the Revolutionary War Veteran's Association’s Project Appleseed, which involves shooting instruction along with history about the impact of marksmanship in the American Revolution.

The clinic teachdes three rifleman shooting positions, use of the sling, six steps to firing the shot, natural point of aim, how to zero your rifle using inches/minutes/clicks, and more.

The project also is designed to promotes civic involvement.

Cost for the two-day clinic: Men $70, women $10,  and $5 for  youths under 21.  The clinic is free for active military, law enforcement officers, and elected officials.

Pre-register: (208) 819-0866 or email ID@appleseedinfo.org.

It seems like basketball season


I'm about to send out an all-points bulletin, if those things are used any more. The sun is missing and I want it back. It's time to be outside, swinging a golf club, running the lawn mower or taking a long walk with the dog. The time for being indoors is January, February, November. Not June. Heck, even some of the stories I've found this morning remind me of winter, just like the clouds outside. Read on.

Hot shots lead Take Your Daughter to the Range Day

SHOOTING —  Girls will rule Saturday, June 9, at a Take Your Daughter to the Range Day sponsored by the Bonner County Sportsmen’s Association.

The event is set of 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Sandpoint Outdoor Range off of Baldy Mountain Road with a heavy punch of female talent to work with participants:

Kathy Konek, a Sandpoint junior rifle team coach.

Hattie (Ponti) Johnson, a former Spokanite, member of the Army Marksmanship Unit and a participant in Air rifle in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.

Organizers say all family members are welcome, but emphasis will be on girls age 6-18.

Association members say they give the girls an opportunity to learn to shoot .22-caliber rifles and pistols in a fun and safe environment with certified instructors and range officers on hand to help.

Guns and equipment will be provided.

Sign up in advance go guarantee a spot: (208) 266-0141, email jcmalison@gmail.com.

TV host tells his side of Idaho illegal hunting citation

HUNTING — On March 20, I devoted my weekly Outdoors column to the case of Oregon hunter Bob Beck, a TV hunting show host, who pleaded guilty to shooting two deer in Idaho even though he had only one non-resident tag.

The  case was made a year after the 2010 hunt when a sportsman gave Idaho Fish and Game a tip after seeing the hunt and the killing of both deer on Beck's Extreme Outer Limits program, which aired on the Sportsman Channel. Beck did not own up to the illegal kill until he was confronted by authorities. The guilty plea was entered and the fines were assessed in February 2012.

Beck has issues with my reporting and commentary on the case. He's elaborated his concerns in posts at many online forums.

Indeed, he's working to have details on the outcome of the case changed. But as of this week, the ruling remains the same as I reported it on March 20 based on information from Idaho Fish and Game Department investigators and the Benewah County prosecutor.

I'll update any changes that develop in the case.

As of today, the case is still active in Oregon.

Meanwhile, you can hear Beck's version of the case in his own words in a radio interview conducted last week by John Kruse of Northwest Outdoors Radio.

The taped interview will air on the show as follows:

  • on 1240 KOFE in St. Maries Saturdays at 8 AM.
  • on 920 KXLY  in Spokane Sunday at 6 AM.
  • on 1230 KSBN in Spokane on Sunday at 2 PM.

Kruse also plans a follow-up interview with Beck..

More heat on hunters to get the lead out

HUNTING — Birding and wildlfie groups are focusing the spotlight on hunters and shooters who use lead shot and bullets claiming that 20 million birds die each year of lead poisoning.

Read the story here.

Archery vs. long-distance rifle debated

HUNTING — I heard an interesting discussion at the Big Horn Show.

A firearms hunter said to an archer:  "More skill and dedication is required to shoot deer at 1,000 yards than to hunt deer with a bow at 25 yards."

I think he might be right while still being wrong.

What do you think?

‘American Guns’ TV hosts coming to Spokane

SHOOTING – Hosts of the Discovery Channel’s “American Guns” will be in Spokane March 3 for a meet-and-greet before the Friends of the NRA fundraiser at the Red Lion Inn at the Park.

Rich, Renee, Paige and Kurt Wyatt, a family known for firepower and cleavage, will be available to the public 3:30 p.m.-5 p.m.

The annual fundraising banquet raises money to promote gun safety, education programs and scholarships. Tickets available at Sharp Shooting, White Elephant, Wholesale Sports and Mountain Shadow Arms.

Marksmanship clinics offered for adults, kids

SHOOTING — A two two-day rifle marksmanship clinic will be held March 3-4 at the Fernan Rod & Gun Club. This will be the first of six clinics to be held in the Coeur d'Alene area this year sponsored by Project Appleseed, an offshoot of the Revolutionary War Veteran's Association.

A Project Appleseed clinic also is set for May 5- in Medical Lake.

Clinic instructors will teach three shooting positions, use of the sling, six steps to firing the shot, natural point of aim, how to zero a rifle and more.

The program also features a few true stories of the American Revolution surrounding the events of April 19, 1775, when marksmanship met history and American Heritage was born. Read more about it here.

The Appleseed Project also promotes civic involvement.

The clinic will be held 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. March 3 and 8 a.m.-4 p.m. March 4.

The gun club is at 11600 E. Fernan Lake Rd.

Cost: Men $70, women $10, kids under 21 pay $5. Active military, law enforcement officers, and elected officials with ID can register FREE.

Info: (208) 819-0866, email ID@appleseedinfo.org .

Pre-register on the Appleseed website.

Trib: UI’s Ho-Hum Shooting Response

You can be reasonably certain when the University of Idaho and Moscow Police will not trigger an alert: When someone fires a gun at a dormitory. When he flees the scene. And when for hours, if not days, nobody knows where he is — or who he is. So it went Sunday. Somebody fired a .45-caliber gun at Targhee Fine Arts Hall, a small dormitory filled with art and architecture students. A bullet crashed through a window, struck a ceiling fixture and then bounced back down into a a cinder block wall. Miraculously, it intercepted no human along the way/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: In light of the murder-suicide involving former assistant professor Ernesto Bustamante, shouldn't the University of Idaho have a better response to shooting situations than this?

Lawmakers consider Wash. shooting range protection

SHOOTING — A bill to protect shooting ranges from civil liability and noise pollution lawsuits, House Bill 1508, has been introduced in the Washington Legislature by state Representatives Dean Takko (D-19), Tim Probst (D-17), and Kevin Van De Wege (D-24).

"Shooting ranges are critical to competitive and recreational shooters, hunters, law enforcement, and for individuals who just want to practice for self-defense," an NRA alert reminds us. "Shooting ranges should be both accessible and affordable for everyone. Washington is one of only two states that does not have some form of a range protection law. There are currently several shooting ranges in Washington that are facing legal battles and burdensome regulations, which if not addressed, could result in their closure."

According to the bill, rules that regulate noise in the "outdoor atmosphere do not apply to a sport shooting range."

Video: Shooting mishaps compiled

SHOOTING — Someone has gone to the effort of compiling video clips of shooting mishaps, including a lot of people getting thumped by high-powered guns.

Some incidents are humorous, some sad, some downright scary for the lack of thought and muzzle control.

It includes the the well publicized indicent of a firearms instructor discharging a handgun in class and several richochet near misses.

The clips also indicate that a lot of women are the butt of firearms shooting jokes, and they have the bruises and black eyes to prove it.

Idaho hunter ed teacher dismissed after gun fired in class

HUNTER EDUCATION — Some of Washington's volunteer hunter education instructors have been grumbling about new procedural rules and a trend toward replacing  instructor firearms in classroom settings with guns that have disabled firing pins.

The Washington Fish and Wildlife Department might seem a little overbearing and unreasonable in this trend — until you read what happened in an Idaho hunter ed class last week:    Here's the Associated Press report:

BOISE — A hunter education instructor in eastern Idaho was dismissed after a loaded handgun brought to class for a demonstration was discharged by a student.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game says no one was injured when the weapon was accidentally fired during the class late Monday in Soda Springs.

The agency prohibits instructors of hunter education courses from bringing live ammunition into the classroom and local police were asked to investigate. Police reported that the volunteer instructor brought the gun and ammunition to class for use as a teaching tool.

After the demonstration, police reported a student who was unaware the gun was loaded discharged the weapon and hit the head of a mounted mule deer.

The instructor was dismissed and counseling made available to the students.

Pistols allowed in Idaho’s short-range deer seasons

HUNTING — Idaho is in the second year of allowing handguns to be used during short-range deer seasons.

Beginning last year, the use of handguns using straight-walled center-fire cartridges not originally developed for rifles was approved for use in big-game short-range weapon hunts, Idaho Fish and Game officials say.

Sporting clays shooters aim at Boy Scout fundraiser

TARGET SHOOTING — Boy Scouts will be benefitting next week from the enthusiasm competitive shotgun shooters have for vaporizing clay targets.

The fourth annual Boy Scout Sporting Clays Tournament, set for Friday (Sept. 16) at Double Barrel Ranch southeast of Spokane already has signed up 115 shooters.

That makes the event the third largest sporting clays tournament in Washington, said Chris Baker, who's organizing the event for the Boy Scouts.

Info: (509) 242-8235

Epilogue: Nugent’s beliefs off target in my hunting camp

HUNTING ETHICS — Right-wing rocker/hunter Ted Nugent has come and gone from the Inland Northwest.

Here's a column wrapup with a few of my final thoughts on the celebrity and his impact on the sport of hunting as I know it.

Interviewing The Nuge: He blew me away

HUNTING/SHOOTING — After an hour-long interview on hunting, shooting and the American way with Ted Nugent, followed by a two-hour concert that loosened the mortar between the bricks of the Knitting Factory, I must say….. I need an F-ing break.

Story to come.

Plug your ears! Ted Nugent is coming

HUNTING/SHOOTING — Rock guitarist, gun rights advocate, shameless hunter and "Kill It and Grill It," cookbook author Ted Nugent is coming to Spokane for a concert Thursday at The Knitting Factory.

What would YOU ask The Nuge about guns or hunting if you had a chance while he's here?

Some critter spared by ‘iron curtain’

HUNTING  – Barbed-wire fences have scarred, crippled or killed wildlife ranging from birds to elk since it was stretched across the West beginning in the 1870s.

But this photo suggests that a fence actually saved the life of one lucky buck or coyote in western Spokane County.

Shooting at the dead

We've had a lot of gun violence in Spokane the past couple of years. It seems that every other weekend or so, someone gets drunk and angry at a party and fires off a gun in a fit of rage.

But this latest report has an interesting twist.

From a Spokane Police Department press release:

Spokane Police Officers responded to a call regarding a gun being fired at Fairmont Memorial Gardens located at 5299 W. Wellesley on (Sunday) at about 1310 hours.  Witnesses in the area described two males in a vehicle pointing a handgun out of a window of a car and firing it at the cemetery.   Officers located the vehicle in the area as it left.  Apparently, the driver of the vehicle became upset at not being able to locate the grave of a family member and fired the handgun out of frustration. 

Jeffrey B Holcomb, 32 years old, was arrested and booked on various charges including DUI, Driving on a suspended license, unlawful discharge of a firearm,  reckless endangerment, and possession of marijuana.   A loaded and cocked handgun was found on the seat of his car when stopped.  Thankfully no one was injured during this incident.

(Spokesman-Review archive photo by Jesse Tinsley shows the cemetery in a more typical peaceful moment)

Hunter haunted by local shooting comment

OUTDOOR ETHICS — During a public meeting Tuesday in Spokane attended mostly by hunters and anglers, Washington Fish and Wildlife Department Director Phil Anderson was asked why the state isn't more aggressive about killing wolves.

Anderson explained the recent federal court ruling that returned the gray wolf to the endangered species list. He said gray wolves were under federal jurisdiction at this time, leaving states few lethal control options to manage wolves.

To that, a man in the audience blurted out, “Why don’t we shoot some legislators?”

Several people gasped. Anderson stood speechless at the front of the room.

A few men quietly commented “That’s not funny,” and “You can’t say that.”

Bravo to those who didn't let it slide. 

But It seemed that one hunter should have stood up, commanded everyone’s attention, and said, “Excuse me. Before we continue, it’s important to point out that comment was deeply disrespectful to all elected officials and just as deeply offensive to anyone who calls himself a sportsman.”

More of my thoughts on this incident are in coming Saturday on the newspaper's op-ed page.

Meantime:  Your thoughts?

MT student won’t be expelled over gun

GUNS — A Columbia Falls High School student who inadvertently brought an unloaded rifle to school in the trunk of her car will not be expelled, the Associated Press reports.

The school board made its unanimous decision Monday night, and the 16-year-old honor student and varsity cheerleader was allowed back in class today.

The junior was suspended Dec. 1 after contraband-sniffing dogs were brought to school and she told administrators she had forgotten the rifle she put in her trunk after a weekend hunting trip.

Monday’s disciplinary hearing had to be moved to a school gymnasium to accommodate the nearly 150 people who attended, some of whom waved signs criticizing school officials’ handling of the case and decrying federal gun laws.

Dean Chisholm, the board’s vice chairman, said the incident appears to be “an unintentional act by a young lady who regrets it, who understands the policy.”

Shooting safety instructors cringe at video

Get Adobe Flash player

SHOOTING — If you own a gun and you’re impulsive and impressionable, DO NOT view this video of two guys performing a really dumb stunt, whether it’s for real or a put-on, even if the rifle were a .22 instead of a .50 caliber.

Toddler handled police gun that injured three

Here’s a news item from the Associated Press: EMMETT, Idaho (AP) — A 3-year-old child was handling an Emmett Police Department officer’s weapon that discharged and injured three people on Aug. 6. The Idaho Statesman reports the agency has been accused of a cover-up in the incident, so Emmett Police Chief Steve Nebeker is now trying to eliminate some of the rumors. The incident occurred at the residence of Emmett Detective Sgt. Kim Judy. Three people, including the 3-year-old handling the gun, a 2-year-old and Judy’s roommate, Whysper Rowden, were injured. Judy took the three to a hospital, but didn’t immediately report the incident. Nebeker says Judy was probably thinking more about getting to the hospital than calling 9-1-1. The three are recovering. The Ada County prosecutor’s office is now considering possible charges. Nebeker also says there’s an internal investigation.

Did Shooting Give Hoopfest Black Eye?

Spokane’s biggest Hoopfest in history is behind us but not before a gang-related shooting gave the event a black eye. Luckily the shooting happened right in front of an off-duty policewoman who played an integral role in bringing the incident to a swift conclusion. Detective Stacey Carr had volunteered for a charity event in the park along with her 11-year-old daughter when she saw the shooting happen. Carr discretely followed the suspects until she could guide other officers to the scene on her cell phone. “I saw his hands out like he’s holding a gun, but I don’t see the gun … [and] he turns around and he looks like he’s firing but again I don’t see the gun and I hear the pop, pop,” Carr said. The bullets intended for a rival gangster ended up hitting two innocent bystanders who did not want to be identified/Jeff Humphrey, KXLY. More here. (SR Photo)

Question: Did the shooting really give Hoopfest a black eye? Or will most people simply shrug it off as something that can happen anywhere that crowds gather today?

Spokane cop shooter still at large

A gunman fired several rounds at a Spokane police officer early this morning, missing the officer but striking his patrol car.

The shooting occurred as the officer, who has not been identified, was guarding the scene of a shooting several hours earlier in the 1100 block of West Frederick.

The gunman has not been identified, and detectives from the drug, gang and major crimes units are poring over tips, said spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe.

“Just definitely protect yourself,” DeRuwe said. “If they’re going to shoot at us, they’re not going to hesitate to shoot at the community.”

Read the rest of my story here.

2 cops hurt in West Side shooting


Associated Press Writer


Two sheriff’s officers were wounded while responding to a dispute at a home between two brothers — the third shooting of law enforcement officers in Washington state in the last three months.

The officers killed the gunman before they were rushed to the hospital. One was listed in stable condition, the other was in critical condition in the intensive-care unit.

Sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said the sergeant and a deputy were shot at around 8:45 p.m. Monday while responding to an altercation between David E. Crable and his brother near Eatonville, a rural community in the Cascade foothills. The home is about 15 miles west of Mount Rainier National Park and 50 miles south of Seattle.

Crable, 35, (right) shot the two officers before he was killed when they returned fire, Troyer said, adding that the gunman has a history of “terrorizing” his family.

The names of the officers were not immediately released. Troyer said the officers were met at the door by Crable’s brother, Troyer said. When the deputies entered the house, Crable opened fire from upstairs, hitting one of the officers multiple times.

“This is somebody that was laying in wait for our guys,” Troyer told reporters near the shooting scene. “There’s not much we’re going to be able to do when somebody is hiding and arming themselves and we have somebody else inviting us into the residence and the second person opens fire on us.”

Crable’s family tried to help the wounded officers by providing first aid, Troyer said.

Deputies said the brother was cooperating with investigators and did not call him a suspect.

“It looks like people that were in this residence went out of their way to help our people,” he said.

Read the rest of the AP story by clicking the link below.

Man accused in carjack shooting said victim owed money

A man accused of shooting another man in an apparent carjacking attempt Friday told police he was trying to get money the victim owed an acquaintance, according to court documents filed Monday.

Joseph P. Ellery, 30, (left) pulled a gun he jumped in the Mitsubishi 3GT coupe that Donald G. Young was driving before Young grabbed the gun and it “just went off,” Ellery reportedly told police.

Young, who family members said is in his 50s, is in critical condition at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center with a single gunshot to his upper body, according to court papers.

Ellery is in Spokane County Jail on $25,000 bond after appearing in court Monday on one count of first-degree assault.

After Young collapsed in the street, Ellery tried driving the Mitsubishi from the scene but ran after he couldn’t get it started, police said.

He was arrested after a police dog tracked him to a dog house in the 2500 block of North Normandie.

Also arrested was Richard P. Hoffman, 34, who police say was driving his 2001 Chevy pickup with Ellery when Ellery got out and approached Young, according to court documents.

Hoffman is charged with drug possession. Hoffman (right) told police he heard a woman in a Ford Explorer that was between his pickup and Young’s Mitsubishi scream for help as the Mitsubishi rocked back and forth.

“Several witnesses began approaching and Hoffman yelled at them to get back because he (Ellery) had a gun and he just shot someone,” according to court documents.

Ellery has previous convictions for burglary and criminal mischief and Yellowstone County, Mont.

In August, he was credited for 67 days served in Spokane County Jail after pleading guilty to second-degree burglary and attempted theft of a motor vehicle in Spokane County, according to news archives.

It’s unclear if Ellery is related to Justin Jay Ellery, the 24-year-old accused of armed robberies at Zip Trip and Papa John’s.