Friday, December 12, 2008

Ulman To Hunters: Keep Your Distance

From HoCo PR:

ELLICOTT CITY, MD – Howard County Executive Ken Ulman announced today that in response to yesterday’s accidental shooting in which a hunter’s bullet shattered the front window of a daycare facility in Clarksville, he will be filing legislation to change the distance a gun can be discharged in proximity to a building designed for occupancy by human beings. Executive Ulman seeks to change the distance from 150 yards to a much safer distance. The Administration is presently researching the appropriate yardage to recommend for this legislation.

“I realize no one was injured in this incident, but that’s because luck was on our side--this time,” said Ulman. “It is clear to me that if these bullets can travel far more than 150 yards, then we must change the County Code to establish a safety zone which would exceed that distance. I know County Council members share my concerns, and I look forward to working with them to improve public safety in the County.”

In yesterday’s incident, six children and three adults were inside the facility at the time of the shooting. Howard County Police are not filing charges against the hunter whose bullet entered the daycare because the investigation indicates he did nothing illegal; police believe the shot was fired from 277 yards away.

At present Howard County Code Section 8.401 states:

“It shall be unlawful for any person to discharge a gun from, onto, across or within one hundred (100) yards of the right-of-way of any public highway in the county and shall be unlawful at any time for any person other than the owner and/or occupant to shoot or discharge any gun within one hundred fifty (150) yards of any dwelling, house, residence or other building or camp designed for occupancy by human beings, the area within that distance being hereby defined as a safety zone, or to shoot on, from, onto or across any safety zone or any public or private land for any purpose, without the express prior written consent of the owner thereof.”

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