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Hunters 'Up In Arms' Over Proposed Ban

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WARREN COUNTY, N.C. — Hunters in one local county are up in arms over a proposal to keep them from firing guns within a half-mile of any building. A close call in November at a Warren County day-care center is fueling the debate.

When a bullet from a hunter's shotgun struck the Kid's R Us Learning Center last month, Roberta Durham feared the worst. Her 4-year-old daughter, Mia, was one of four children in the room at the home day-care where the bullet shattered a window. Even though none of the children was injured, Durham said she wants to see that type of accident never happens again.

"I actually feel there should be no hunting around houses," she said.

Warren County Commissioner Jan Humphries advocates a ban on hunting within 3,000 feet of buildings, which is about a half mile buffer, but some hunters like Jack Thompson said the restriction will all but prohibit hunting in Warren County even on land that hunters lease.

"[In] my opinion, that's a little bit too far," Thompson said.

Thompson said hunting is his lifelong passion. He uses trained dogs to flush out deer from the woods -- the same procedure used by a hunting club near the Warren County home day-care.

"Accidents happen, you know. People get excited when they are deer hunting, but they shouldn't," Thompson said.

"The word, 'Sorry,' does not help. It does not take away pain. It does not ease pain," Durham said.

Warren County commissioners promise to revisit the issue in two weeks.