Man Killed In Accidental Target Shooting Incident

Local trap shooting business talks safety prevention tips

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Authorities say a 22-year-old man has died after he was shot while target shooting near Aberdeen.

Eh Thor Gar died Tuesday morning after being shot accidentally by his four-year-old relative on Memorial Day.

Local trap shooting businesses say accidents like this one are sad, but can be prevented.

Chris Erickson said, “We want to make sure that everybody’s safe and goes home safe.”

As part of the board of directors at Crooks Gun club in Sioux Falls, Erickson’s number one priority for members is gun safety.

Erickson said, “We treat them as if there’s always a shell in the gun.”

Erickson has been shooting for many years and says it’s difficult to hear about fatal shootings like Eh Thor Gar’s.

“It’s very sad to see that,” said Erickson.

When Gar and his friends were target shooting on Memorial Day a shotgun was set down and his 4-year-old relative picked it up, leading to Gar’s accidental death.

Erickson said, “The younger kids, in my opinion, have no business being out there. If they’re as young as four years old they probably shouldn’t be out there.”

But keeping young kids away from guns isn’t the only thing people should consider.

Another important safety tip to remember when trap or target shooting is to put a shell in only when you’re ready to shoot at your target.

There are also simple steps to take if someone needs to set their gun down.

Erickson said, “Open your gun up, take the shell out, and lay it down or hand it to somebody else empty.”

Erickson says this step only takes a matter of seconds and could mean the difference between life and death.

“If it’s a matter of saving somebody’s life or preventing an accident, seconds,” said Erickson.

Gar’s death is still under investigation.

The Brown County Sheriff’s office is handling the case.