Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating a hunting accident that occurred Thanksgiving morning just north of Crawfordsville. Jeremy Horn, 35, of Crawfordsville, was shot in the elbow by his hunting partner Troy Payne, 48, of Linden.

Investigators say Payne had just shot an antlered deer and had his shotgun loaded with the safety off while he checked on the deer. While Payne was checking the deer, Horn arrived to assist in dragging the deer out of the woods. Payne slung his shotgun over his shoulder without placing the safety in the on position and bent over to grab onto the antlers of the deer. When Payne bent over to grab the antlers, the shotgun slid off of his shoulder. Payne caught the shotgun with one hand in the area of the trigger. The shotgun discharged and struck Horn, who was standing about four feet away in the elbow.

Payne rushed Horn to the St. Elizabeth Crawfordsville Hospital where he received 8 stitches in his elbow and was released. Investigators are ruling the shooting as an accident.

Indiana Conservation Officers encourage hunters to be cautions when handling firearms. Control the muzzle and its direction at all times. Be sure of your target and beyond. The safety is a mechanical device and can sometimes fail.