February 2

Man suffers head wound in apparent accidental shooting on Cobbosseecontee Stream

Police said the victim’s injuries were not life-threatening and confiscated a Chinese-made rifle with bayonet attached from a West Gardiner man.

By Keith Edwards kedwards@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

WEST GARDINER — Police are investigating a shooting that injured a man ice fishing on Cobboseecontee Stream Sunday.

click image to enlarge

Firearm confiscated: District Game Warden Robert Decker inspects a rifle taken from the scene of a shooting Sunday in West Gardiner after an ice fisherman was hit in the head with a bullet on Cobbossee Stream. Bryan Hickey, 21, was interviewed by wardens after the shooting and a Chinese military rifle was taken from him, according to police. The injuries the ice fisherman suffered are not considered life threatening, police said.

Staff photo by Andy Molloy

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Scott Fraley, 54, of Raymond, was transported to the MaineGeneral Medical Center by Gardiner Ambulance after being struck in the head while fishing with friends off Manning Drive just before noon.

Police characterized Fraley’s wounds as non-life-threatening and said he was released from hospital Sunday afternoon.

“It was a gunshot wound to the head. It sounds like it was superficial,” District Game Warden Robert Decker said.

Decker identified 21-year-old Bryan Hickey, of West Gardiner, as the shooter.

Decker, who described the incident as a “hunting incident, in which someone was shot,” said Hickey “was out shooting his firearm. It’s under investigation at this time, as to what he was shooting at.”

Decker said it appears Hickey “accidentally shot at the victim.”

Police reached the shooting site from a trail behind the West Gardiner Rod and Gun Club, which was hosting a fishing tournament this weekend.

The club is across Cobbosseecontee Stream from Manning Drive, where Cobbosseecontee Stream widens into Mill Pond.

Wardens, marine patrol officers and state troopers entered the woods behind the club after the victim was transported to the hospital.

Marine Patrol Officer Clint Thompson emerged from the woods shortly after noon Sunday carrying a Chinese-made rifle, which had a folded bayonet attached, and placed it in a game warden’s truck along with several shells after applying an evidence tag.

Decker came out of the woods at 1:30 p.m., escorting Hickey.

Hickey said he wanted a “clean conscience” before sitting in the warden’s truck to be interviewed by Decker.

Hickey was later allowed to leave by himself.

Decker declined to discuss what charges, if any, could be brought because the case was still under investigation. He said they would collect information and the district attorney’s office would decide whether to press charges.

Hunting on Sundays is illegal in Maine.

Decker said anyone shooting a gun, whether they’re target shooting or hunting, has to identify their target and be careful where the bullet may end up.

Keith Edwards - 621-5647 kedwards@centralmaine.com

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