Frightened man shoots and kills son-in-law during Birthday Surprise
A man shot and killed his son-in-law by accident as he jumped out of a bush to surprise him for his birthday, U.S. police stated.
61-year-old Richard Dennis will avoid criminal charges for killing Christopher Bergan in Florida.
Police said that the 37-year-old victim made a growling sound before jumping out of the bush to surprise Mr. Dennis.
County Sherriff Bob Johnson of Santa Rosa said the shooting was “totally accidental”.
The Sherriff added that earlier in the evening someone had banged on Mr. Dennis’ front door at his Gulf Breeze house near Pensacola.
The loud banging reportedly shocked Mr. Dennis, who went outside before the person ran off.
According to Sherriff Johnson, Mr. Bergan arrived at the house around two hours later.
According to Mr. Johnson:
“At 11.30, Mr Dennis hears the same type of banging on the back door that he heard on the front door earlier.
So he turns on the back porch light, he steps out and Mr Bergan jumps out of the shadows, scaring Mr Dennis.”
Mr. Bergan’s father-in-law killed him instantly with one shot.
Mr. Johnson said:
“Our investigation has revealed that this was totally accidental, it was a really sad occurrence, and that no charges are warranted in this case.”
After the shot was fired Mr. Dennis immediately called the police and started first aid to stop the bleeding.
Mr. Johnson said what occurred was a
“horrible accident that should never have happened”.
He added: “I can’t imagine what they’re going through.”
For NBC’s report on the story see the video below.
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