UPDATE | Family asking for answers 6 years after hunter’s death

GALLIA COUNTY, Ohio (WSAZ) -- UPDATE 12/2/19 @ 7:45 p.m.
Six years to the day that a man was killed while hunting, his family is speaking out asking that the person responsible come forward.

As the anniversary of the shooting death of Larry Bradley approaches, Gallia County Sheriff Matt Champlin is encouraging anyone with information pertaining to the case to come forward.

Larry Bradley died Dec. 2, 2013 after he was shot in a tree stand while hunting for deer in Gallia County. His wife Denise tells WSAZ she and her family still do not have closure for what happened. That’s why she and Larry’s brother, Robbie, shared their frustrations with WSAZ on Monday.

“He didn’t have an enemy,” said Robbie. “Everybody here loved him.”

Weeks after the shooting, an anonymous letter was sent to the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office. In the letter, the author admitted to being the shooter and said it was an accident and added it was eating at them like cancer.

“If it was an accident, so be it,” Robbie said. “We can forgive that. Just come forward and give us the closure that we need.”

The anniversary of the shooting also falls on the first day of deer gun hunting season in Ohio. Denise hopes her story also encourages hunters to be safe while hunting.

“Know exactly where their bullet will go, and where it will land and make sure that there is nothing behind it.”

Hunting experts say you should wear bright orange or other highly visible colors. A hunter should clearly identify their target before shooting. Also, be alert when hunting near developed areas and trails. Lastly, tell someone where are you will be hunting, and when you’ll be back.

“I encourage the person responsible to contact me or any of my deputies directly so we can close this case and give the family some closure,” Gallia County Sheriff Matt Champlin said.  

Anyone with information about this case can leave it on the Sheriff’s Office Anonymous Tip Line at ‪740-446-6555‬



ORIGINAL STORY 12/1/19
It’s been six years since Larry Bradley was found shot to death while he was hunting in Gallia County.

Bradley was hunting about 1 mile into the woods off Thaxton Road in Morgan Township on Dec. 2, 2013 when he was shot.

As the anniversary approaches, Gallia County Sheriff Matt Champlin is encouraging anyone with information pertaining to the case to come forward.

“This case is still open and we hope and pray that whoever did this will do the right thing for Larry and his family and come forward,” said Champlin. “If this was truly an accidental hunting incident, I can't imagine why this person would not want to grant the family and themselves some everlasting peace by coming forward."

“The people or person that did this do not know the pain that they have caused all of us," Larry’s wife Denise Bradley told WSAZ in 2014.

Several weeks after the shooting, an anonymous letter was mailed to the sheriff's office. In the letter, the author claimed responsibility for the shooting, describing it as an accident.  

"As of Dec. 2 my life has changed for ever,” the letter said. “I was hunting on the land that border the Russel farm tracking a deer I shot just after daybreak. I knew I was trespassing hunting on land I didn't have permission to hunt on when I shot at the deer I had been tracking. I heard someone started yelling it scared me so much cause I didn't have permission to be there and I couldn't afford a fine so I ran back to public hunting land and finished my day hunting. It wasn't until I herd on on the news later that day I new what had happened. I am so sorry for the hurt and pain that I caused on the day. Can u please tell the family I am so sorry, I have told no one of this not even my wife or kids this is eating at me like a caner. Please tell the family I am sorry. My life will never be the same, I am not a bad man just a very scared and sorry man."

“I encourage the person responsible to contact me or any of my deputies directly so we can close this case and give the family some closure,” said Champlin.  

Anyone with information about this case can leave it on the Sheriff’s Office Anonymous Tip Line at ‪740-446-6555‬