No Charges In PA Hunting Dispute Death

PA Game Commission, Bear Hunting Magazine

The decision has been made to not charge in the death of Frank N. Shaffer, of Red Lion, PA. The results of the investigation showed that Shaffer had shot a man twice before the man returned fire, killing Shaffer, in Jefferson County, Pennsylvania this November.

The Red Lion man confronted a group of men hunting on his property. According to a news release from Pennsylvania State Police Frank N. Shaffer, 63, shot Paul H. Plyler, 23, twice, and Plyler returned fire, striking Shaffer once. Shaffer encountered Plyler and four others, who were hunting bear on Shaffer's Beaver Township property, police said. Shaffer ordered the hunters to leave his property, but later confronted three of them.

Trooper Jamie LeVier could not say if Plyler's group was mistakenly on Shaffer's land when he first ordered them to leave. The second encounter took place near his property line. "From the first encounter to the second encounter, they were definitely moving in a direction that appeared they were leaving his property," LeVier said.

LeVier also could not say whether Plyler's group was still hunting during the second encounter, or specifically how much time passed between encounters. The second time Shaffer confronted the hunters, there was a "verbal altercation," and Shaffer "fired the first shot in the confrontation, striking the victim (Plyler) in the wrist," according to the news release.

Plyler retreated, and Shaffer fired at least three more rounds at him, with one of the rounds hitting Plyler in the back, police said. Plyler then returned fire, hitting Shaffer once, killing him. Plyler was taken to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

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