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Archive for Sunday, December 28, 2008

Gunshots raise homeowner concerns

Rural Leavenworth County incident heightens fears over straying bullets

Beth Hoffman, who lives in rural Douglas County northwest of Lecompton, would like a law preventing hunters from coming within a certain distance of the house.

Beth Hoffman, who lives in rural Douglas County northwest of Lecompton, would like a law preventing hunters from coming within a certain distance of the house.

December 28, 2008

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County residents worried about stray bullets

After five-year-old Katherine Cook was hit with a stray bullet almost a year ago in Linwood, some rural Douglas County residents are worried about their own safety. Enlarge video

Learning to live

In October 2008 we first introduced you to Katherine Cook. Her life came to a halt when a bullet pierced her head. It was a freak accident that remains unsolved. What continues is the journey of a remarkable recovery.

Beth Hoffman, who lives in rural Douglas County, would like a law preventing hunters from coming within a certain distance of a house.

Beth Hoffman, who lives in rural Douglas County, would like a law preventing hunters from coming within a certain distance of a house.

The sounds and sights of nature are abundant outside Beth Hoffman’s log house on a secluded hilltop in northwestern Douglas County.

A variety of birds also make their home on the wooded 15 acres Beth and her husband, John, bought 10 years ago. Deer are often seen and occasionally a bobcat.

“This is paradise,” Beth Hoffman said.

Sometimes that paradise is interrupted. Along with the sounds of nature there are disturbing sounds that make Hoffman nervous.

Gunshots, sometimes even at night.

“It doesn’t matter whether there is a hunting season or not,” Hoffman said. “It’s any time of the year.”

Stray bullets

Hoffman worries about stray bullets and shotgun pellets. Her concerns escalated after a little girl was struck in the head by what may have been a stray bullet nearly a year ago in rural Leavenworth County.

Katherine Cook, 5, was playing in her backyard near Linwood when the incident occurred in February. She survived but has a long recovery ahead of her. Nobody has been arrested or come forward to say they were the shooter. Sheriff’s officers have been tightlipped about their investigation but said there was no indication that the girl was targeted. It could have been an accident.

Hoffman said she doesn’t feel safe because she doesn’t think some hunters are practicing hunter safety. Late one night, a law enforcement officer knocked on the Hoffmans’ door. He was checking to see if they were all right, Beth Hoffman said. Neighbors had called about poachers, and officers had found them on the Hoffmans’ property.

No hunting

The Hoffmans don’t allow hunting on their property, even though no signs are posted.

“I suppose we should, but I don’t think it would make any difference,” she said. “If a hunter is tracking something, I don’t think he is going to stop just because he thinks he has gone over onto someone else’s property.”

Beth Hoffman thinks there should be a law that prevents hunters from hunting within a certain distance of a house.

By law, a hunter has to ask for permission to hunt on someone else’s property, Kansas Wildlife and Parks Department spokesman Bob Matthews said. The landowner can post signs stating that written permission is required to hunt. Under Kansas law, an 8-inch by 10-inch purple square painted on the top half of a few fence posts carries the same meaning as a sign.

Shooting rules

Incidents involving a nonhunter being struck by a stray bullet are rare, Matthews said.

As for requiring hunters to stay a certain distance from a house, rifle bullets can travel as far as two or three miles, Matthews said.

“We conduct hunter safety classes and a variety of other things trying to encourage safe hunting,” he said. “So much of it depends on the personal ethics and responsibility of the person pulling the trigger.”

Some states require hunters to keep their distance from a house. Under New York law, hunters must not discharge a weapon or bow within 500 feet of an occupied residence or business. In November, New York authorities charged a deer hunter with second-degree manslaughter when a stray bullet struck and killed a toddler who was outside her grandparents’ home.

Accidents

Hunting accidents usually involve hunters shooting other hunters, said Wayne Doyle, hunter education program coordinator with Wildlife and Parks. In Kansas in 2007, there were 19 hunting accidents and one was fatal, he said. So far this year, there have been 11 accidents with three fatalities.

“Most of the hunting accidents — over half in Kansas — turn out to be swinging on game,” Doyle said. “Usually one hunter of a party shooting somebody or sprays them with shot.”

Accidents were reduced dramatically 30 years ago after Kansas lawmakers passed a law requiring that anyone born after July 1, 1957, who wants to hunt must be certified by an approved hunter education course. Prior to that law, annual hunting accidents numbered in the 70s and 80s, Doyle said.

Taking precautions

Nevertheless, Hoffman still worries about stray bullets. She thinks the law also should require hunters to notify neighboring residents that they will be hunting on nearby land.

The Hoffmans have taken additional steps of their own to increase safety around their house. An invisible electric fence keeps their two white Great Pyrenees dogs from roaming far from the house. Gates have been installed on their wrap-around porch to keep grandchildren from wandering away.

As much as she likes wildlife, Hoffman knows that their populations need to be controlled and she insists she’s not against hunting.

“I’m not condemning hunters,” she said. “I just want more safety regulations.”

Comments

bndairdundat 5 years, 3 months ago

"Try to understand…A hunter operates within the law. A poacher operates outside the law. They may look the same to a non-hunter, but there is a big difference from the hunters point of view."max1 - Would you say that a woman dressed provocatively is "just asking for it"? Or that a man's skin color makes him more likely to commit a crime? Or a persons political party makes him "ultra conservative" or " ultra liberal"? I applaud you for allowing hunting to help regulate the deer population and using good judgment keeping the number of hunters on your property minimal. I still, as a hunter, will argue that anyone who disrespects your property in any way ceases to be a hunter and becomes a poacher. I might even argue that they were never hunters. Respect of the land, the owner, the surrounding property owners and. the animal comes ahead of all other considerations If you can get tag numbers, if you can identify these poachers, if you can take pictures or videos, the hunters I know would be supportive of you. If we work together we can at least bring the number of these incidents down. My own time in the woods has been somewhat limited in recent years, but I assure you I will be on "neighborhood watch" for whomever's property I hunt.

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max1 5 years, 3 months ago

Every year, on my rural property, I have to deal with poachers, spotlighters, "headhunters" (they cut a trophy's head off with a chainsaw and let the carcass rot in place), illegal tree stands where deer have been baited, signs (no hunting without permission) torn down and fencing cut. The notion that those who do any of the above are "not hunters" is absurd. Those who have been caught and identified on my land have been people known to load their freezers with venison. I promote hunting on this property, because I have a constant herd of 15 to 20 on it year-round, and unlike the neighboring ranchers, I don't charge a fee to hunt. For safety reasons, I don't allow more than one hunting party to hunt on my rugged acreage at the same time.I use both signs and purple posts to mark my boundaries, and the notion that a sign must be posted every 50' is absurd. I have 3 1/2 miles of perimeter around my pasture. The law, as I understand it, requires signs at all property corners, and depending on the terrain and visibility from one sign to the next, at intervals of not more than one-quarter mile.I've had my dog killed because he disturbed the movement of deer near illegal hunters, and a few years ago I was told by three hunters, hunting without permission, to stay off of my own property during deer season. I kicked them off, not just because they were hunting illegally, but because there were kids camping on my acreage at the same time.The game warden is unable to patrol all the area within his supervision, and he has expressed frustration about the increasing incidents of headhunting and spotlighting. Hunting violations are not confined to rifle hunters -- laws are frequently broken during shotgun seasons as well.http://www.wibw.com/home/headlines/12788017.htmlDec 23, 2007: WICHITA, Kan. (AP) The shooting death last weekend of an Americus teen by an alleged poacher could fuel calls for more Kansas game wardens.Authorities say 18-year-old Beau Arndt was hiding among decoys while hunting for geese when a person in a passing pickup fired a rifle bullet into the decoys, killing him.But the Department of Wildlife and Parks says it only has 70 game wardens. Without additional funding, authorities say they'll have to rely on the public helping spot and report illegal activity.

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madmike 5 years, 3 months ago

My wife and I are looking at 42 acres in the country. As a responsible property owner and hunter, my property will be fenced and posted. The house we are having planned will be somewhere in the middle of my property. I will hunt on my own land and allow friends and co-workers to hunt there also. The problem I have with the letter writer and her supporters is that they don't want to fence or post their property, but want laws to prevent people from legal hunting based on their views on the sport.

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

"I am not trying to minimize important matters of discussion. However, I do view a certain amount of the discussion focusing around penalizing those who did nothing wrong and do nothing wrong rather than trying to stop those who are the real problem."You are right---unfortunately it is human nature to paint everybody in a group with the same brush (i.e. Muslim=terrorist; homeless=lazy). Add that to the fact that many of us have an aversion to guns and hunting in general and have had bad experiences with hunters, and this is what you get. I can try to understand why you like hunting, but I probably never really will.So we need to focus on what we have in common, which is the need for safe hunting. Since I now live in the city, not sure what I do, except to report the idiot shooting into my neighbor's backyard while I was working in my garden.

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saoirseglen 5 years, 3 months ago

I agree that a girl being shot by a stray shot is an issue. However, it seems that many want to paint all hunters and gunowners as being responsible when it is really more a matter of either intentional malice or accidental targeting without any intent by a single individual.If I were hunting in a flat open area where there was a lack of anything but perhaps a thin windbreak or farm buildings to catch a missed shot I would be all the more careful with my shots. I know to look for what is beyond my target and I would be using a spotting scope or binoculars to check downrange before I was out hunting and also double checking the day I would be out hunting. Why? Because I want to verify what is beyond my hunting area to make certain that I will not hit something other than the ground if I miss a shot.If I were to be hunting unfamiliar ground I would ask the landowner or agency representative if he or she could show me the property lines in person or at least give me a rough map of landmarks to guide me while out hunting so that I could stay on the property during the hunt. If I needed to, I would obtain a USGS or satellite map of the area and mark the boundaries so that I would have something to tell me where I was and if I were off where I had permission to hunt.I am not trying to minimize important matters of discussion. However, I do view a certain amount of the discussion focusing around penalizing those who did nothing wrong and do nothing wrong rather than trying to stop those who are the real problem.

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

saoirseglen---thanks for the explanation about high-powered rifles. And you are right, in the hilly, wooded country of Douglas County, it can be difficult to know where property lines are.Most of the hunting on my family's farm did seem to be at night. However, the hunters who spooked our cattle certainly had not asked for permission and had to be well aware of property lines.I think that Ms Hoffman probably was asked questions by the reporter rather than going to the reporter and complaining and asking him to write an article. If she happens to read all the unkind comments, she will probably be really careful before speaking to a reporter again. Maybe this article and responses will cause some thought to be put into doing more about the problems. The little girl being shot shows that there is a problem.

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saoirseglen 5 years, 3 months ago

A few points have gone without answer or response. One of them is the question why someone would want a firearm that has a range of 2 to 3 miles. The fact is that the only way a rifle can reach that distance is to be placed in a machine rest so that it can be fired at a very specific angle so that the bullet travels in a specific arcing trajectory to maximize its range. In field conditions most deer rifles have a maximum effective range, as sighted in for deer hunting, of at most 400 yards. A varmint or predator hunter might at most have their rifle sighted in for a maximum of 500 yards. The majority of hunters hunt at 250 yards or less and most varmint and predator hunters hunt at 350 yards or less.If the woman will not post her property or fence it, and all her neighbors with larger acreages do not post or fence their land, how would a hunter, with permission, know exactly where one property ended and another began? The neighbor would need to explain where the boundaries are or give a GPS equipped hunter specific coordinates for the boundaries. No, I don't know that area, but looking around Douglas County I can see where a lack of fences or clear landmarks of some sort would make a hunter confused where one property ended and another began.The family land I hunt on is fenced and is posted with purple paint around all four sides. We also have good neighbors on three sides who help us watch for poachers. I also have permission to track game upon their land if I have to after shooting it on my family's land. I ask annually to make certain it is fine to do so again and each time they laugh and say yes. Another point that has mostly been overlooked is that furbearers and predators may be what is being shot at after dark, especially if there are cattle around that are being bothered by coyotes. I doubt a rancher or farmer would restrict his anti-predator work to daylight hours if his livestock is being attacked at night. Also on cold winter nights the report of gunshots can travel for miles and thus a gunshot a mile or more away can still sound too close for comfort.Before complaining about problems one ought to take responsibility for dealing with the problem until such time as it is apparent that the sheriff or game wardens are needed to deal with it. If deputies and wardens are overworked, it is a very good idea to help them out so that they might be able to help you.If Beth Hoffman would rather complain than do something to help herself then she needs to sell her property and move to town where she doesn't have to worry about it. I was born and raised in a rural area and know what taking personal responsibility for problems entails. What it sounds like to me is that Hoffman would rather punish everyone who is not a part of the problem than actually take responsibility for the problems she is having and trying to punish those who are the problem.

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Bowhunter99 5 years, 3 months ago

so there are several more regulations that the Hoffmans are not using/following yet they want more of them... great.Don't want people to hunt on your land? Perfect. That's your right? Don't want people to hunt on your neighbor's property? Sorry...that's NOT your right. Your rights stop on your property line. Buy the property next door if you don't want hunting there.Forcing your believes (not rights) of no hunting on others when they're on their own property would be the same as me showing up at the Hoffman's and demanding they allow me to hunt there.

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SusieCreamcheeze 5 years, 3 months ago

I'm going with militant..got my purple paint ready....keep away from E 2000 Rd

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igby 5 years, 3 months ago

City slickers should be charged three times the value of property in the country!Don't you think!New regulations?

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militant 5 years, 3 months ago

Sweetie, You need to not only shoot back, but nail those unfortunate lifeless bodies to the trees (paint an 8" purple stripe on their foreheads first); pretty soon word will get around and eventually you'll hear fewer and fewer shots.Check back this time next year and let us know if it's working.

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firemedic301 5 years, 3 months ago

Bndair hit the nail on the head with his posts. Leslie your comments are understandable and appreciated. I am an avid outdoorsman and hunt and fish when I get the chance. I am too like bndair when he talks about the hunting experience. To me there is almost nothing better than to be sitting in the woods and listening to everything wake up around you. As to the comment about the game wardens. The last time I talked to one of them I think he said there were around 60-70 in the ENTIRE STATE!! Beside being seriously understaffed ( in my opinion there needs to be 3-5 for each county) they are not supposed to work any overtime once they hit 40 hours. So once Jeff and Ryan (the two in this area) max out, they're off the road unless an emergency arises. The local deputies have far too much going on to have to take all the calls for poachers and other forms of illegal hunting. And last but not least I did shoot a deer this year with a rifle but I waited to make the shot until he turned and I was able to shoot him and the bullet go into a hillside. After processing it at one of the local processors it ended up costing right around $1.00 a pound and I got burger, chops and roasts. Tell me where I can get meat cheaper?!

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mellowdude 5 years, 3 months ago

I just started deer hunting recently, and everywhere I've been, the feeder is located downhill from the stand. I've never made a level or upward shot. I use a high-power rifle because I want the deer to die instantly - I don't want them in pain. Once the bullet goes thru the deer, since the shot is always downhill, it goes into the ground a few feet beyond the deer and presents no danger to anyone. The properties I hunt on are fenced. Doesn't matter if there's a 12 point buck on the other side of the fence. No one I know would cross the fence with their person, a bullet, or an arrow. We might wait in hopes the animal comes over to our side, tho. Deer hunting is necessary to control the population, and deer meat is very lean. All our ancestors killed for food, almost all animals kill for food, and animals are usually not as kind to their prey as humans.The story about skinning a deer alive makes no sense at all. The first step always is to remove the guts. Skinning can wait until it's time to butcher, and most people take their deer to a processor to be butchered.

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bndairdundat 5 years, 3 months ago

Cleo - That sounds very barbaric by anyones standards, I can assure you I have never seen anything or heard of anything like that around here. I think it would be safe to say if you ever witness your hamburger being processed from hoof to shelf you would become an instant vegetarian if you aren't already. That isn't meant as an attack on the preference's of vegetarians, I respect my vegetarian friends choices and wouldn't change a thing.Speaking for myself, the hunting experience is about enjoying the outdoors, the preparation for the hunt, the safe and as humane as possible taking of wild game. I feel no joy at taking the life of the animal. As the animal falls I go to work on harvesting the meat quickly so that the animal's life is not wasted. We all get a little flak for the way we live differently from each other. I can respect your lifestyle if you respect mine.Stay warm, park the snow shovel, enjoy those grandbabies,Now we can both see what the multitudes want to hit us with ;-)

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bndairdundat 5 years, 3 months ago

Try to understand...A hunter operates within the law. A poacher operates outside the law. They may look the same to a non-hunter, but there is a big difference from the hunters point of view. If you think something illegal is going on, call and report it. Anyone hunting legally will be glad to answer questions and show necessary license's and permits. If he has mistakenly walked onto your property he will apologize and leave. If he comes back he is poaching and should be prosecuted. I and the hunters I know live by these rules and respect the owner/landlord of the properties we hunt. On a walk-in hunt in the seventies a fellow hunter and I got lost in a snow storm. After walking across a farmers pasture to get to the road we went to his house to apologize for trespassing. He gave us a ride back to our truck, laughing at us for being too "citified"

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Leslie Swearingen 5 years, 3 months ago

I am all by myself here so I am feeling very brave in writing this, knowing in advance what is to come. I think all hunting is horrifying and I will never understand the joy of killing an animal. Nowadays if you must eat meat you can go to the supermarket. There is no necessity to dress in fur or hides. How could this possibly be a sport. I talked to a Native girl at Haskell University who is from Alaska and she said she had witnessed men skinning a deer who was still alive. That image is haunting to me. Did the deer feel no pain?

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avetaysmom 5 years, 3 months ago

My husband is an avid hunter, and I do not agree with many saying that hunters would go onto property either way, no they won't if they are responsible people and know the law. My husband knows his boundries and would never hunt on personally owned land, unless it was okayed by the land owner. You would be surprised at how many times he has come home telling me how he saw a huge buck on the property line that he could not get. It all boils down to irresponsability on some hunters part, they are a minority, not the majority of hunters.

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macon47 5 years, 3 months ago

those folks should move back to the cityno one should live in fearit isnt right, but no one can protectyou 24/7.

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Buggie7 5 years, 3 months ago

Bowhunter you are very clueless if you believe that hunters do not go onto others property whether its posted or not because they do. There have even been hunters that will be asked to leave the property (no fines no citations) when law enforcement has asked them to leave they come back the next weekend in a different vehicle. If they see a good spot for hunting they are gonna do it. It doesnt matter if its posted or not. The law enforcement doesnt help any when all they do is come out and ask them to leave with no citation. Its pointless to even call them. There is no safe place to live. You are just going to have to deal with that fact and live the best that you can.

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Gabe Hoffman 5 years, 3 months ago

I love how it's somehow her fault that people aren't respecting the law, and it's her responsibility to take extra steps, that shouldn't be needed, to stop people from hunting on/near their land.My parents live out there and they often hear not only the standard shotgun and rifle rounds, but apparently, Bambi is getting tougher, because automatic gun fire is heard as well. They also have people just come onto their property with their vehicles.But, it's propably their fault, judging by the post here.

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

gnome---just keeping people off her small property would not keep her safe from gunfire.

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

If Ms Hoffman's house is on 15 acres, wouldn't anyone hunting on her property be way to close to the house for safety? I don't know what good signs would do---her request was "...there should be a law that prevents hunters from hunting within a certain distance of a house." She also spoke about hearing gun shots out of hunting season. I don't see any reason for complaining about anything she said. Would any of you people want someone hunting that close to your house?

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displacedsunflower 5 years, 3 months ago

I lived along the DG-FR Co. line, & every sign that I put upwas knocked or taken down. Couldn't keep one up, & it was a 'job' putting them up. When I was growing up there,hunters came out from K.C. & hunted without permission.One day, we returned & found a bullet in the wall behindwhere my brother sat to eat, & went thru the window thatI sat in front of at the table. Lucky us for not being athome at the time!

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 3 months ago

here's an idea,the hoffmans should sell their land which they're too lazy to sign, and move to within one block of the Crossfire Tavern! *I agree with Gl0ck0wner,Beth wants all this publicity, and another law, to restrain people who likely already aren't following existing laws. heck, if she wants to be really safe: install an infrared detector on her roof, one that sweeps their whole property. when a human is detected, she could take her gun and order that trespasser off her land?

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womanwarrior 5 years, 3 months ago

snap_pop_no_crackle (Anonymous) says…Why do some people feel one becomes a super citizen by preventing others from exercising their rights?So the jerk who shot the little girl was exercising their rights? I'm a hunter and if I accidently hurt someone I would make amends. And, yes, feeble, it should be open season on poachers.

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ladyjhawk 5 years, 3 months ago

I believe we are in Fur-Bearing season, so hearing gunshots at night would not be all that unusual. Raccoon is often hunted at night.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 3 months ago

Why do some people feel one becomes a super citizen by preventing others from exercising their rights?

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notsobright 5 years, 3 months ago

ww- too familiar with human nature. . . I doubt I have. . . or anyone else for that matter! Do appreciate you have tried though. You probably can swim farther than me, but we all drown trying to cross the Pacific.

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feeble 5 years, 3 months ago

so, can we have an open season on poachers?On a more serious note, why do some posters feel that exercising one's second amendment rights makes one a super citizen, while electing not to exercise one's second amendment rights makes one a second-class citizen? Are these rights not inalienable? If you are going to base arguments and rights upon the castle doctrine, you need to respect that doctrine in all cases, even when someone doesn't elect to exercise rights derived from that doctrine.

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womanwarrior 5 years, 3 months ago

notsobrightWell I don't know about you, but I've owned up to every screw up that I've ever done. And I'm far from perfect, so I've had to do plenty of owning up to do, which is probably not real English. So I own up to bending the English language too.

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notsobright 5 years, 3 months ago

ww- some very good points. Don't know if they are any lower-life than the rest of us though.

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womanwarrior 5 years, 3 months ago

Yes, accidents happen. But a responsible gun owner would take responsibility for their accidents. If they weren't aware of what happened they could have easily figured it out the next day, since it was all over the news, and they would know that they had been in that area at that time. They are nothing but low life cowards, who didn't come forward to apologize and help with medical expenses. If you aren't willing to take responsibility for you actions, don't buy a gun. I'm a gun owner. If I were to accidently shoot someone I would have the guts to come forward. All real gun owners would. Wimps who buy guns to get their macho jollies wouldn't.

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DouglasCountySucks 5 years, 3 months ago

I see some good and bad ideas on here. The law is to post your land properly , with a sign every 50 ft along the outer bounderies. They can be simple keep out , no hunting or hunting with written permision only. It is good to have signs up no matter how you feel, it saves you from bogus lawsuits in case a trespasser gets hurt and it is not posted..Most hunters, not poachers are very kind and safe.I still suggest she puts up signs and that should be good for her land, cant say anything about her neighbors land.

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KansasKel 5 years, 3 months ago

"...a little girl was struck in the head by what may have been a stray bullet..."What does that mean, MAY HAVE BEEN a stray bullet? It clearly was a bullet, I'm sure you can ask to see the xrays since it's STILL IN HER HEAD!

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notsobright 5 years, 3 months ago

womanwarrior- what do you mean "turn themselves in?" They are not necessarily a criminal. Because someone shoots a gun does not mean they attempted to shoot someONE! Someone shooting at squirrels or coyotes could have done that with no awareness what had occurred. They may not even be negligent The publicity of the event and talk like your post may sure scare someone from coming forward to say they were out hunting that day. Accidents do happen.

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notsobright 5 years, 3 months ago

madmike- it is the responsibility of all hunters to know where they are. The law in KS is: one must have permission to tresspass on another's land. No different than someone going into a yard in town and setting up a personal camp site. . .people in town do not need to post their land and neither does someone in the country. (I realize it does help make a point though!) As far as signs. . . they are not needed. If you do not have permission- you are not suppose to be there.Signs do not give the law enforcement any more authority to give a citation without a complaint. The "purple paint rule" gives that authority. It is a great regulation.

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womanwarrior 5 years, 3 months ago

Also, the guy or girl who shot the little girl knows he/she is responsible. And chances are they weren't alone. Why doesn't the coward turn themselves in? People like this are the reasons we are saddled with gun laws, but I get the impression that many gun supporters would defend this coward. That's why, although I enjoy my guns, I will never join the NRA.

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madmike 5 years, 3 months ago

If her land is not fenced, how will a hunter legally hunting on neighboring land know that he has left his hunting area and entered someone else's property?

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invictus 5 years, 3 months ago

hunting is already too big a hassle

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gl0ck0wn3r 5 years, 3 months ago

"00jester (Anonymous) says… She shouldn't have to. It's like saying in town you should have to post “don't break in” but i suppose by YOUR logic, your asking for it if they do, and you can't be bothered to post signs."No, actually that isn't my logic - but don't let that stop you. My logic was that she is suggesting the current situation isn't working and yet refuses to do anything on her own. My logic is that, in general, the current regulations work and that before one screams about wanting additional laws one ought to take personal responsibility for their own property. I cannot think of a single hunter I know that would hunt somewhere they aren't wanted and, although I'm sure there are bad actors out there, I'm sure the vast majority respect property rights.

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womanwarrior 5 years, 3 months ago

Years ago I lived in the country. We had a good neighborhood watch going on for poachers. We'd have people shooting from the road, etc. The neighbors would alert the game warden and call each other to be on the look out. Are there game wardens anymore? Or do they just rely on the local law enforcement? Maybe she should organize her neighbors and call the police every time shots are heard. I've been hunting early, early in the morning, but I don't know of real hunters who are out there at midnight. Shots fired then wouldn't be hunting, it would be stupidity. Real hunters and gun rights supporters need to help fight this sort of thing. It gives us all a bad name, and leads to restrictive gun laws that affect us. If you know stupid poachers or people who target practice in unauthorized areas, turn them in. It's not squealing. It's protecting your gun rights.

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Bowhunter99 5 years, 3 months ago

A hunter will not go into someone else's property whether it's posted or not. If you want to make it easier for law enforcement to fine/penalize the poachers nearby her property, go buy a sign.Any amount of signs and regulations will not stop poachers...... just like any amount of regulations and gun control won't stop the criminals from owning guns.

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Gabe Hoffman 5 years, 3 months ago

"So basically, she can't be bothered to properly post her own property, but she wants “more regulations"She shouldn't have to. It's like saying in town you should have to post "don't break in" but i suppose by YOUR logic, your asking for it if they do, and you can't be bothered to post signs.

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gl0ck0wn3r 5 years, 3 months ago

"The Hoffmans don’t allow hunting on their property, even though no signs are posted."So basically, she can't be bothered to properly post her own property, but she wants "more regulations" (ie: laws) and more tax dollars spent regulating something that really needs no additional regulation to make her "feel" more safe. Great logic.

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invictus 5 years, 3 months ago

verfy you train settlers are not much better.

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Fort_Aubrey 5 years, 3 months ago

post a couple of signs. It's easy.

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Grump 5 years, 3 months ago

"Under Kansas law, an 8-inch by 10-inch purple square painted on the top half of a few fence posts carries the same meaning as a sign."There's no 10 inch wide requirement. KSA 32-1013(b): "Instead of posting land as provided in subsection (a), any landowner or person in lawful possession of any land may post such land by placing identifying purple paint marks on trees or posts around the area to be posted. Each paint mark shall be a vertical line of at least eight inches in length and the bottom of the mark shall be no less than three feet nor more than five feet high. Such paint marks shall be readily visible to any person approaching the land. Land posted as provided in this subsection shall be considered to be posted by written permission only as provided in subsection (a). "

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chzypoof1 5 years, 3 months ago

verity - If you really grew up on a farm, then you would understand that hunting is necessary for the balance of the deer population. The people you are discussing are not hunters, they are jack#$@@#$ that ruin the sport for everyone else. As far as rifle ranges...the range is due to the power that it takes for a rifle bullet to take down a deer. The knock down power needed, allows for the bullet to travel farther. Good hunters follow good hunting methods, like having a backdrop to shoot against, only shooting a confirmed deer, etc. If they don't follow those rules, they again are not true hunters.As for the home owner here, you live in the country, among others who allow hunting and probably hunt themselves. If you don't like that, you can move back into the city. There's no more danger where you live than living by the cross town tavern, and having people shoot handguns in the air. My close family lives in the country, surrounded by hunting, and they've never had an incident (in 50 years).Thanks-poof

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

invictus---my ancestors came west on a train and I have shot a gun. Didn't enjoy it at all. I enjoy the quiet at night with no gun shots.I can't believe I'm even replying to you as I know you only come on to stir things up and never have anything remotely intelligent to say. I have to go have some more coffee and do something productive.

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invictus 5 years, 3 months ago

Buy a gun, you might enjoy shooting it, the joy of rural living. I guessing her ancestors came west in on a jet liner not a covered wagon.

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verity 5 years, 3 months ago

I don't know much about guns, so I have a question I would like answered---why does anybody need a gun that will shoot 2-3 miles?My sympathies are with Ms. Hoffman. I grew up on a farm and we had a lot of damage done by hunters---cutting through barbed wire fences so they could drive through, spooking cattle, causing them to break through fences---took us three days to find them all and we were lucky that we did and that the cattle didn't cause an accident on the highway. Don't tell me hunters respect the law, private property or signs. When you're out in a field on a tractor and you hear gun fire near you, it's downright scary and dangerous. You can call them poachers but to us on the receiving end, they are still hunters.

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greenworld 5 years, 3 months ago

lecompton...lets see open season on anything year round 24/7...poaching? what's that.

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crusier 5 years, 3 months ago

post signs... it is that easy. You will be surprised at the difference it will make.

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75x55 5 years, 3 months ago

"Why should anyone need to post signs on their property? If a hunter is truly respectful of others' property, they'll get permission before they hunt there."If KDWP wardens, sheriff, etc., find a hunter on posted property without written permission to be there, they can be cited on the spot, rather than having to waste time dragging the perp around until they find the landowner to confirm whether the hunter is authorized to be there or not. That is the real benefit of posting the property.

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mom_of_three 5 years, 3 months ago

she bought the property ten years ago,so she isn't trying to move in and change. And secondly, who doesn't have a right to feel safe on their own property, even if it is in the country?

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notsobright 5 years, 3 months ago

I appreciate the concerns. I also appreciate landowners understanding the need for game management and conservation. As a serious conservationist and safety instructor I have been concerned for years with the growing development and safety in places like Douglas County. While most hunters will honor the posting of her property; the night-time shooting is most likely poaching which will not be prevented by putting up signs. Poachers are NOT hunters- they are violators.The greater concern I have had for many years is the need to restrict "high power rifles" in these more suburban areas. I have stood at the soccer fields in South Lawrence during the October "RIFLE" deer season knowing that within sight, there were honest hunters shooting high power rifles. An accident is bound to happen sooner or later.Most areas of the country where there are increasing population of residents allow only "shotguns" in the more populated areas. "Shotguns"- shooting slugs- are far safer and do not have the 2-3 mile range of rifles. Further- "RIFLE deer seasons" in the middle of October, while the weather is still fair, foilage is still thick, and people are utilizing the outdoors for many purposes, is just asking for trouble.The KDWP does a good job, but they also seem behind the times on some of these issues. I sure wish the KDWP would regulate the types of weapon's usage and seasons in these growing populated areas. An accident is going to occur. It will affect many people. There will be an out-cry by those who may not understand the need for game management and the many alternatives available while greatly minimizing or even removing virtually all the risk to people and property. Make some calls to the KDWP and the Game Commission before someone gets hurt!

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introversion 5 years, 3 months ago

First of all, what a suburban mentality- move some place and try to change the surroundings you moved into rather than changing yourself to suit the surroundings you chose to move into...And secondly, why make more laws to sanction people who apparently don't follow laws which are already in place?If they can't manage 15 acres, maybe they should have bought less land.

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bndairdundat 5 years, 3 months ago

I was once given permission to hunt on property owned by non-hunting/no hunting allowed rural family. I had spotted a large buck with an arrow stuck in his hip and limping badly. The animal was inedible, the home owner asked to see the deer, and thanked me for putting it out of its misery.If you ask the worst that can happen is to be told "no".

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 3 months ago

"Please take the time to properly post your property and I will guarantee you hunters will abide them."Why should anyone need to post signs on their property? If a hunter is truly respectful of others' property, they'll get permission before they hunt there.

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TacoBob 5 years, 3 months ago

"Under Kansas law, an 8-inch by 10-inch purple square painted on the top half of a few fence posts carries the same meaning as a sign"Uh, wouldn't that be a rectangle and not a square?

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edjayhawk 5 years, 3 months ago

"You should move back to town Beth where it's safer."You should move away from Lawrence so we will be safer from stupid comments like this...

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Boston_Corbett 5 years, 3 months ago

Signs may not prevent her paranoia, but it would be taking positive action.

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Norma Jeane Baker 5 years, 3 months ago

Maybe if there were more hunting, Grandma wouldn't have got run over by a reindeer. Poor Grandma.

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redmoonrising 5 years, 3 months ago

There was a low water bridge not far from Wakarusa elementary school that a lot of people used for shooting practice. It was in an isolated area and driving through there with several people holding guns could be a bit intimidating. There were turns coming onto that bridge from both directions. These were not hunters and I'm guessing it was far enough from the school not to be a danger, especially being in a low lying area and them target shooting. Still, the school and some residences were less than a mile away. And the area was always littered with beer cans and liquor bottles, not a good combination with guns.

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Bowhunter99 5 years, 3 months ago

There are plenty of safety and hunting related regulations. Please take the time to properly post your property and I will guarantee you hunters will abide them. A hunter knows where the property he is hunting ends so yes, if the animal they're tracking goes over the boundary, they will fo everything they can to ask for permission.Poachers on the other hand are a different story. They behave like criminals and guns... permits, regulations, etc, will not stop them so there is no reason putting any more limitiations on law abiding citizens.

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hipper_than_hip 5 years, 3 months ago

You should move back to town Beth where it's safer.

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Rashamon 5 years, 3 months ago

^ Thank you so much for saving us from the deer. Five of them jumped through my window and drank all my whiskey. And who knows what all they did.

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DouglasCountySucks 5 years, 3 months ago

I would suggest putting no hunting or treaspassing signs up at least every 50 ft along your property boundries. That is the leagal posting distance. As for more laws on hunting, naa thats not needed.99% of hunters know the rules and follow them to a T.Keep in mind if those hunters dont kill a few deer , youl have a big mess with them rutting on your house and jumping in windows and who knows what all.

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