Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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Man mistaken for coyote, killed in hunting accident

VAN WERT, Ohio - A Van Wert man hunting coyotes in a field north of town was shot to death Sunday by another hunter who mistook him for one of the animals, authorities said yesterday.

Trevor Ellerbrock, 27, of Burt Street died in Van Wert County Hospital after being shot once in the midsection, the Van Wert County Sheriff's Office said.

Deputies said Mr. Ellerbrock was hunting in a field off of Convoy Road in Union Township when Troy Clark, 36, of Feasby Wisener Road, Van Wert, mistakenly shot him. A man using a cell phone called the sheriff's office at 9:38 p.m. and reported the shooting.

A news release from the sheriff's office said Mr. Ellerbrock had been using a recording of a rabbit's squeals to try to lure coyotes to the field where he was hunting, about a half-mile west of U.S. 127.

Mr. Clark and a 15-year-old boy who were hunting in the same area heard the recorded squeals and shined a night light in the direction of the sounds.

The sheriff's office said the pair saw Mr. Ellerbrock and thought he was a coyote. Mr. Clark fired one round, which struck Mr. Ellerbrock.

The wounded hunter yelled, and Mr. Clark and his teenage companion ran to help Mr. Ellerbrock, the news release said. Mr. Smith said the shooting was being treated as an accident.

Sheriff Stan Owens could not be reached for comment. A woman who answered the phone at Mr. Clark's home said he didn't want to talk to a reporter.

A rescue squad from the Van Wert Fire Department took Mr. Ellerbock to the hospital, where he died after efforts to stabilize him failed.

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