Stray Bullet From Shooting Range Hits Home

By: Lori Dougovito Email
By: Lori Dougovito Email

A stray bullet from a state owned shooting range hits a Blackman Township Home, barely missing a construction worker.

"I heard a crack, felt something hit me at the same time and looked at the wall. I saw a bullet," says Kevin Roberts who was hanging drywall just two feet away from where that bullet hit last week. It hit the corner of a garage in a new home being built in the Stonegate Farms subdivision on Lansing Avenue.

The shooting range, south of the home, is owned by the Michigan Department of Corrections. A Jackson County Sheriff's Deputy and two instructors were training on the range the day it happened. Undersheriff Tom Finco says ballistics show it most likely came from the Deputy's gun.

"Even during the day you here pop, pop, pop, pop, pop," says Shannon Ireland. He lives in the subdivision. First concerned about the noise from the range, he contacted Blackman Township Public Safety and was told about the home being hit.

"I can live with the noise as long as I fell safe, my family feels safe and everyone in the neighborhood feels safe," Ireland says.

The Michigan Department of Corrections is working on changes including a mound of dirt or berm behind the targets being raised eight feet higher. A wooden structure called a baffle system will be installed. It should help catch stray bullets. More trees will be planted, which will help with the noise, and targets may be lowered as well.

The subdivision developer wants the range closed until the changes are made. A spokesperson for the MDOC says it will remain open as this is the first incident of its kind.

It's not clear when the improvements will be finished or how much they will cost.

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  • by Pat Location: Lansing on Oct 24, 2007 at 09:22 PM
    Who was there first? The range or the subdivison? I am reminded of the story about people who bought homes in a subdivison that was built next to an existing pig farm. The odor from the pig farm was upsetting to the home owners who wanted the pig farmer to make changes to accomodate them or leave the area. Bottom line? If the gun range was there first the subdivison developer should take responsibility and pay to install whatever is necessary to make his development safe to live in. It was the developers decision to build next to the range. Not the other way around. The developer should pay to make his home buyers safe.
  • by Rick Location: Stockbridge on Aug 28, 2007 at 11:27 AM
    First, I agree with JR from Lansing. If every time a developer inconvenienced me, and cost me money, I was awarded my losses, they would get their greedy butts out of the way faster. The government at many levels is pandering to the developers because it means more people, which equates to more tax dollars. IT'S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY! Second, the article isn't exactly clear about the actual origin of the bullet. It says that "it appears as if it came from the deputy's gun", but does not say that it has been proven. I've belonged to many gun clubs that have all been targeted by "concerned citizens", and had complaints filed about stray bullets. And, without exception, all were found to be either false claims to begin with, or the bullets came from somewhere else. Until it is known for sure where the bullet came from, I'd keep the range open too.
  • by JR Location: Lansing on Aug 24, 2007 at 08:04 AM
    This is an established state target range. The new homes are not. Why build homes down range from a "known" gun range? What next? Build a day care center there? Just make it safer as said. Look out, here come the liberals again for gun control!!
  • by Brian Location: Montgomery on Aug 23, 2007 at 04:20 PM
    The spokesperson from MDOC says to leave it open! Why? Because there`s only been one incident? Isn`t that one too many? Or would you like to go out and tour the residential area while I am target practicing????
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