Family farm victim of multiple shooting incidents - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Family farm victim of multiple shooting incidents

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Investigators examine the Bowie family farm, site of several random shooting incidents. Investigators examine the Bowie family farm, site of several random shooting incidents.
Heads of cattle have been lost as a result of the random gunfire. Heads of cattle have been lost as a result of the random gunfire.
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TONEY, AL (WAFF) -

What would you do if you were standing on your property and had some bullets flying by your head? One Tennessee Valley family said it's happened to them more than once.

Gunshots have whizzed by members of Justin Bowie's family, including his military dad, while they were standing in broad daylight on the family farm.

"If you can hear a whiz, it's very close," said Justin.

Turns out neighbors were shooting target practice in their backyard.

In another incident, Justin heard gunshots from a skeet shooting park nearby. The family owns a cattle farm in Toney, and on two other occasions, cows have been shot and killed. Five incidents in all – the family must feel like they're in the crosshairs.

"It's scary. Dumb to think people don't think about where the bullet can land. It can travel miles if it doesn't hit any object," Justin said.

Justin's dad Jim said they didn't report these incidents. State conservation officer Joe Lindsey said while the majority of gun owners and hunters are totally responsible and mindful of the law, "A minority of people who know they can have a firearm in the county think they can shoot and do as they wish, and they're not mindful of what's behind their target."

Lindsey said he and his partner have worked over 1,100 similar cases since 2010. It is not as rare of an incident as you'd think, and tragedies could follow, along with criminal charges.

"You've got civil issues as well as criminal issues; possible hunting and fishing issues," said Lindsey.

Not to mention shooting into an occupied dwelling or criminal mischief charges. That's even if someone, God forbid, isn't shot, injured, or killed.

"They just don't take into account the safety issues. But we do," said Lindsey.

If you see anything suspicious, please call the Alabama Wildlife Federation Hotline, open 24 hours a day, at 1-800-272-GAME (4263).

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