Minor Charges Filed against Man who Allegedly Shot at Wis. Hunters

Updated: 10/24/2013 7:27 AM KSTP.com By: Beth McDonough

We now have an explanation on why a Wisconsin man who allegedly fired multiple shots at two hunters only faces minor criminal charges. 

On Tuesday we reported the story of the two duck hunters who say they were shot at by a man. The man told KSTP he fired his gun, but he said he didn't shoot at the hunters.

Barron County Prosecutor Angela Beranek called it a "dangerous situation." She told us she charged the shooter, Van Hawkinson, with negligent handling of a weapon and disorderly conduct. She said from the evidence, that's all she can prove he did wrong.

The hunters, David Reichenberger and Levi Johnston, tell KSTP getting shot at while in a canoe with no escape is pretty major. "He got nothing for basically trying to kill us; how is it you can shoot at somebody and the next day be out of jail?"

When asked if he was sorry, Hawkinson replied "yes." When asked why, he said "because I went to jail for it. An overnight visit to jail."

Hawkinson has no criminal history. He was released $1,000 bond.

Click here to watch extended interviews from both sides.