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Thread: Hunters near York school prompt gunfire alert

  1. #1
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    We may want to keep an eye on this one. Sounds like further gun / hunting restrictions may be brewing in York County.

    http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-lo...,2596263.story

    Hunters near York school prompt gunfire alert
    They were firing away from Mount Vernon Elementary on adjacent land, the principal says.
    By JENNIFER L. WILLIAMS | 247-4644
    September 13, 2008

    YORK -



    — Students and staff were hustled indoors from the playground at Mount Vernon Elementary School after hearing gunshots Thursday.

    The York/Poquoson Sheriff's Office was called, arrived, checked around and found hunters next door shooting at doves.

    School Principal Barbara Wood was told by deputies that the hunters had permission to hunt on the property adjacent to the school.



    They also assured her that "the hunters were aware of the location of the school and that they were shooting their firearms away from school grounds," according to a letter Wood sent home to parents Thursday, informing them of the incident.

    The school is on the east side of Route 17, north of its intersection with Victory Boulevard.

    It's in a residential neighborhood, with undeveloped land to its east.

    "The safety of the children was first, and the teachers were very much in control of bringing the classes in from the playground," Wood said Friday.

    "I knew Mount Vernon was prepared because we've talked about this type of thing before," she said.

    "So we just went through our routine of keeping everybody safe."

    The land adjacent to the school is owned by a private party that allows hunting on the property, schools spokeswoman Betsy Overkamp-Smith said.

    York County spokeswoman Christie Phillips confirmed that hunting at that particular location was allowed.

    "The way county regulations are currently structured, the discharge of firearms is prohibited within 300 feet of certain named subdivisions within the county," Phillips said.

    "One is Plantation Acres, which is right adjacent to that property.

    "But the actual property on which they are allegedly shooting has no other firearms prohibitions on it."

    Wood, in her third year as Mount Vernon's principal, and said nothing similar occurred in the past.

    In the letter to parents, the principal said, "We have no information to indicate that students and staff were in any danger at any time."

    After about 20 minutes with everybody locked in the school Thursday, Wood received an all-clear from deputies and allowed students and staff to go outside.

    She explained to them what occurred and that "additional gunshots might be heard during hunting season."

    Dove hunting season in Virginia started Sept. 1 and ends Sept. 27, and it's permitted from noon to sunset.

    It also runs Oct. 4 to 31 and Dec. 27 to Jan. 10.

    "I assured students that their safety is of utmost importance and that, while in our care, we will do everything we can to keep them safe," Wood wrote to parents.

    School division officials are concerned about the proximity of hunting to the school.

    "Yesterday's incidents were very troubling to us, and we're working in collaboration with the sheriff's department to take a total look at this situation," Carl James, chief operations officer for York County schools, said Friday.

    "We're researching the ordinance. And once we finish our research, then we can make a more informed decision as a school division about how we approach these issues in the future," James said.


    "Our primary concern is, and always will be, student safety."

    Thursday's shooting didn't go on continuously, Wood said, and it couldn't be heard in the school.

    But as of Friday afternoon, a handful of parents had contacted her regarding the incident.

    "We're relieved it was just hunters," she said, "but we're still always concerned about the safety of the students."

  2. #2
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    Many years ago there was state owned property right beside my house. Some people got permission to hunt doves on it and I was out side hearing the shots. I also keprt hearig rain from a clear sky. I finally realized that it was the pellets from the hunters hitting my house and me.

    This is a tricky situation shooting doves right beside a school.

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    Armed wrote:
    "Yesterday's incidents were very troubling to us, and we're working in collaboration with the sheriff's department to take a total look at this situation," Carl James, chief operations officer for York County schools, said Friday.

    "We're researching the ordinance. And once we finish our research, then we can make a more informed decision as a school division about how we approach these issues in the future," James said.


    "Our primary concern is, and always will be, student safety."
    That's what we need, more laws to prevent shooting around schools. We all know how well laws to prevent shootings in schools work.

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    PT111 wrote:
    Many years ago there was state owned property right beside my house. Some people got permission to hunt doves on it and I was out side hearing the shots. I also keprt hearig rain from a clear sky. I finally realized that it was the pellets from the hunters hitting my house and me.

    This is a tricky situation shooting doves right beside a school.
    If they were responsible hunters, your house should have been to their back and their quarry to their front side. If they could hit your house with dove shot, they were too close.

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    Campaign Veteran Dutch Uncle's Avatar
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    Well, it sounds as though the school people are going to ask for a "zoning change" to forbid hunting on that land. I can think of a much better solution that would meet everyone's needs: the hunters should agree to notify the principal every time they are going to start shooting so the school folks won't be taken by surprise. If the hunters are using 7 1/2 shot and firing away from the school at a distance of 100 yards, there is no danger to anyone at the school.

    Dare Elementary school is well within hearing range of the LaFayette Gun Club, the largest club in the state, so I'm sure the school administration is inured to the daily sound of gunfire. Gunfire alone, therefore, should not be an issue at Mt. Vernon.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Dutch Uncle wrote:
    Well, it sounds as though the school people are going to ask for a "zoning change" to forbid hunting on that land. I can think of a much better solution that would meet everyone's needs: the hunters should agree to notify the principal every time they are going to start shooting so the school folks won't be taken by surprise. If the hunters are using 7 1/2 shot and firing away from the school at a distance of 100 yards, there is no danger to anyone at the school.

    Dare Elementary school is well within hearing range of the LaFayette Gun Club, the largest club in the state, so I'm sure the school administration is inured to the daily sound of gunfire. Gunfire alone, therefore, should not be an issue at Mt. Vernon.
    Well...I couldn't disagree more Uncle! I'm tired of this high alert BullS&!t. Hunting is a tradition in Virginia. The problems in York have been going on for a long time and it's mostly because of new people coming to Virginia.

    They can either accept the fact that Virginians hunt and if you put a school in a hunting area, little bumbleass Jr's gonna hear some shooting....or they can hitch their panties up and go the hell back where they came from!

    I have flat zero tolerance for this and it's an absurd idea to expect people who either own or lease hunting land, to check in with the school principal before shooting doves.

    I find it a little odd that a group of people who refuse to show ID or disarm, because they have a Constitutional right to refuse, would even consider asking permission or checking in with the school...to exercise their Constitutional right to hunt.

    In about 70% of this state the state song is still Carry me back to old Virginia and the state slogan is Virginia is for Virginians!:X

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    It would seem to me that the school would be immensely safer with the hunters nearby.

    York County is not populated with the same group that it was 20-30 years ago; neither is Glouchester County - used to have a place down in Guinea Neck beyond Achilles on the Severn River.

    When we shoot dove, the 7 1/2 & 8 shot falling on us is referred to as "heavy rain!"
    We never shoot across a road, know where the other hunters are and never, never take flat shots.

    Your right Peter - this is Virginia and we want to keep it that way. If you move here fine, but embrace our traditions!

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    peter nap wrote:
    .....and it's mostly because of new people coming to Virginia.

    Sadly - I couldn't agree more. I think a lot of our gun related issues stem from the liberals that move here from other states.

    A few years ago I was having a similar conversation with a sheriff. I half-joking told him that we should have a law that says you have to live here for 10 years before you are allowed to vote in local elections.

    He laughed, and told me he understood where I was coming from, but - "you know we can't do that..."



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    Armed wrote:
    PT111 wrote:
    Many years ago there was state owned property right beside my house. Some people got permission to hunt doves on it and I was out side hearing the shots. I also keprt hearig rain from a clear sky. I finally realized that it was the pellets from the hunters hitting my house and me.

    This is a tricky situation shooting doves right beside a school.
    If they were responsible hunters, your house should have been to their back and their quarry to their front side. If they could hit your house with dove shot, they were too close.
    They were all licensed and hunting on State owned land supervised by the Game Wardens so that is by definition around here as responsible hunters. As far as distance they were at least 1,000 yards away.

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    peter nap wrote:
    Well...I couldn't disagree more Uncle! I'm tired of this high alert BullS&!t. Hunting is a tradition in Virginia. The problems in York have been going on for a long time and it's mostly because of new people coming to Virginia.

    They can either accept the fact that Virginians hunt and if you put a school in a hunting area, little bumbleass Jr's gonna hear some shooting....or they can hitch their panties up and go the hell back where they came from!

    I have flat zero tolerance for this and it's an absurd idea to expect people who either own or lease hunting land, to check in with the school principal before shooting doves.

    I find it a little odd that a group of people who refuse to show ID or disarm, because they have a Constitutional right to refuse, would even consider asking permission or checking in with the school...to exercise their Constitutional right to hunt.

    couldn't agree more strongly well said.


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    67GT390FB wrote:
    peter nap wrote:
    Well...I couldn't disagree more Uncle! I'm tired of this high alert BullS&!t. Hunting is a tradition in Virginia. The problems in York have been going on for a long time and it's mostly because of new people coming to Virginia.

    They can either accept the fact that Virginians hunt and if you put a school in a hunting area, little bumbleass Jr's gonna hear some shooting....or they can hitch their panties up and go the hell back where they came from!

    I have flat zero tolerance for this and it's an absurd idea to expect people who either own or lease hunting land, to check in with the school principal before shooting doves.

    I find it a little odd that a group of people who refuse to show ID or disarm, because they have a Constitutional right to refuse, would even consider asking permission or checking in with the school...to exercise their Constitutional right to hunt.

    couldn't agree more strongly well said.
    These may well be sportsmen and hunters that do not understand that either we stand together or we fall alone.

    Maybe we can win some converts by helping them any way we can.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    PT111 wrote:
    Armed wrote:
    PT111 wrote:
    Many years ago there was state owned property right beside my house. Some people got permission to hunt doves on it and I was out side hearing the shots. I also keprt hearig rain from a clear sky. I finally realized that it was the pellets from the hunters hitting my house and me.

    This is a tricky situation shooting doves right beside a school.
    If they were responsible hunters, your house should have been to their back and their quarry to their front side. If they could hit your house with dove shot, they were too close.
    They were all licensed and hunting on State owned land supervised by the Game Wardens so that is by definition around here as responsible hunters. As far as distance they were at least 1,000 yards away.
    They weren't raining on you from 1000 yards unless they were hunting doves with buckshot.....but whatever distance

    Shot rain won't hurt you or your house but it is considered extremely bad manners. Just because someone has a hunting license and hunts on state land, doesn't make them a responsible hunter.

    If that happened with any of the Dove groups I hunt with, the person would be spoken to and if he still shot that direction, escorted on his way.

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    peter nap wrote:
    PT111 wrote:
    Armed wrote:
    PT111 wrote:
    Many years ago there was state owned property right beside my house. Some people got permission to hunt doves on it and I was out side hearing the shots. I also keprt hearig rain from a clear sky. I finally realized that it was the pellets from the hunters hitting my house and me.

    This is a tricky situation shooting doves right beside a school.
    If they were responsible hunters, your house should have been to their back and their quarry to their front side. If they could hit your house with dove shot, they were too close.
    They were all licensed and hunting on State owned land supervised by the Game Wardens so that is by definition around here as responsible hunters. As far as distance they were at least 1,000 yards away.
    They weren't raining on you from 1000 yards unless they were hunting doves with buckshot.....but whatever distance Whatever, it was 400 yards from my house to the edge of the propertyand they were on the back side of it.

    Shot rain won't hurt you or your house but it is considered extremely bad manners. Just because someone has a hunting license and hunts on state land, doesn't make them a responsible hunter. General rule around here is if the haven't been caught then they are responsible (see No Weapons signs are ignored) I didn't say I was hurt only that I heard and felt the shot.

    If that happened with any of the Dove groups I hunt with, the person would be spoken to and if he still shot that direction, escorted on his way. This was a large group and shooting toward a subdivision of about 100 houses.

  14. #14
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    Hunters/shooters that are irresponsible should have their behinds kicked as appropriate. The vast majority act responsibly and should not be punished for acts they did not commit.

    We have more than enough (too many really) laws on the books. Enforce those that demand some action. I will even help retrain or get rid of the bad apples.

    Now if you will excuse me. Ive got to get my gear together for tomorrow - taking the granddaughter out to teach her how to bust some clays.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    It's one thing if the school is in an urban area. But I remember hearing hunting rifles/shotguns at recess when attending a rural grade school. Nobody thought anything about it. Now when I was in high school it was in town and miles away from the closest rural areas where hunting or shooting was allowed. Gunshots heard between classes there would have been potentially alarming. We think we need to rename what was once called common sense to something like sense that people in education utterly lack or sense that soccer mom's cannot obtain.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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