York County man accused of shooting, killing man he thought was a deer

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York County, Va. - A 21-year-old York County man has been charged with murder after allegedly shooting another man by mistake after thinking he was a deer.

Reports of shots fired came in at 4:51 p.m. on Friday from the 1900 block of Lakeside Drive.

The victim, identified as 68-year-old David W. Ware Jr., was found with an un-fired shotgun in the marsh reeds near the home.

During their investigation, police learned that the suspect, 21-year-old Brandon Bartlett, shot Ware by accident thinking he was a deer.

It is believed that Ware was hunting a fox that had been killing chickens in the neighborhood, police say.

Bartlett has been arrested and charged with second degree murder. He is now being held in the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail without bond.

York-Poquoson Sheriff Danny Diggs stated the following regarding last night’s tragic events. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of the victim of last nights tragic shooting. Mr. Ware's death was completely avoidable and underscores the need of anyone using a firearm to follow the basic safety rules that include not shooting at anything you cannot see and identify.”

12 comments

    • CryMea River

      One Redneck shot compared to how many black thugs??? I will take my chances with the rednecks of the world thank you.

      • Pete J.

        How in the hell does hunting accident have anything to do with black “thugs”? Why does this tragedy have to turn to a race issue? The poor man is dead, there were no thugs so why start something?

    • sayitotmyface

      Big Boy…Is this really the type of person you are? That man that died? He’s a relative of mine and he’s a great man with a big heart. Yet i the face of tragedy you judge and put others down without knowing the details. This poor man, father, grandfather was killed in a senseless tragedy trying to rally his chickens back to his house. People like you should keep your mouth shut. Merry Christmas. God Forbid you have to face anything like this in your life. Appreciate your compassion.

      • BigBoy

        I have faced many, many tragedies throughout my life. I, too feel sorry for the victim & his family. My point is the “Redneck mindset” throughout this area which places great emphasis on killing an innocent animal, only to prove one’s “manhood”. Now, ANOTHER life has been lost. Please spare me the BS about “thinning’ the herd”, or “stopping the diseases from spreading”.

        • Eli Gregory

          I suggest you relocate to an area more in line with your ideology. Why live somewhere among people you obviously dislike. I suggest New York City, Washington DC, Seattle Washington, Chicago Illinois, Milwaukee WI, Boston MA, Portland OR — those cultural Utopias that have been declared “Redneck Free” decades ago. It would make us happy and I’m sure you’d be happier among like minds. By the way. Go to hell.

    • Brads1gurl

      The guy who shot the poor man was a good friend of mine. I am sorry for the loved ones of the victim. I just hope that my friend doesn’t get a long sentence. I love him and I know that his family and his girlfriend does too.

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