Wisconsin’s deer season opened with a bang, but one 11-year-old hunter will not be going home with the nine-point buck he shot. According to the Associated Press, DJ Jorgenson was hunting with his son, Kameron, near the town of Oneida, Wisconsin when the boy shot and wounded the buck. The deer then ran off into private property, where another hunter managed to finish it off.

“We could see that the other landowner on his land, and we got up as far as the fence line. He came down and met us by the fence post,” Jorgenson told WLUK-TV.

The landowner, Randy Heyrman, indicated that Jorgenson’s intial shot only wounded the deer in the leg and said it took an additional two shots to put the animal down. The hunters met at the edge of Heyrman’s property to discuss who would get the buck.

It is not unheard of for two hunters to claim the same deer, although it is fairly uncommon. In this case, wildlife officials said the law was squarely on Heyrman’s side as to who should get the deer. In Wisconsin, as in many other states, hunters are unable to follow wounded deer onto private property. If the deer dies there, than the property owner can actually claim the deer, although hunters can request permission to retrieve it.

The Jorgensons and Heyrman decided to settle the matter with an old-fashioned coin toss, which the Jorgensons lost. Before they left, the young hunter took a quick picture with the buck he could not keep. DJ Jorgenson remarked that he believed the decision was fair, but remained disappointed that his son will have only a picture to remember the deer by.

You hear an interview with Jorgenson below.

Who do you think should have kept the deer?

Image screenshot of video by WLUK-TV FOX 11 on YouTube

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31 thoughts on “Two Hunters Shoot the Same Buck, Owner Decided with Coin Toss

  1. I will be unpopular for this however, the landowner should get the deer. He finished it off, the boy only shot the deer in the leg. The deer could have lived, all be it, on three legs or could have suffered a long, painful death somewhere away from the hunters. The father should have realized his son didn’t kill the deer and congratulated the landowner on his deer. Perhaps also spending more time at the range with the boy would help in the future.

    1. Kill shot gets the animal, however if you have deer on private land your freezer is most likely already full of it already. Them poor city folk needed the venison food group for a change

  2. I too agree that the landowner should keep the deer. A bad shot from an 11 year old is reason to hit the range and become more proficient at shooting before attempting to claim a maimed deer.

  3. The boy missed and wounded the deer, that simple. I wounded and lost my first deer too. My brother finished it off that evening. He was kind enough to let me claim it but I do not count it on my “bagged” list. It’s counted on my lost list…. Lesson learned.

  4. I agree the kid should have made a better shot and needs practice as everybody should. The landowner was being a nice guy.

  5. I hunt with a group of close friends. Rarely do we have to track a deer, but when we do and another member of the group takes the kill shot. We agreed first blood gets the deer. This is a simple agreement between friends. However, in the rule book, kill shot gets the deer. The neighbor could have been a nice guy and let the kid have his buck. Infact he did give him a chance with a coin flip. Maybe this is better for the kid. To practice shooting and do better next time. Sounds like this dad may not have made the baseball team in high school. I don’t think he should teach his son to do something halfway and expect the reward.

  6. The deer belongs to the guy that killed it and NOT to the one wounding it. Teach your son some rifle accuracy & he wouldn’t have been in this position.

  7. Sorry, but the kill shot takes the buck. For the Father to take the story to media is ridiculous. Thats not teaching his son anything but whining to get his way. Do it right the first time….

  8. For Fox 11 to perpetuate the myth that the 11 year old “shot” the deer is not helpful. While technically he did shoot it, any hunter with even a little experience would not say they shot a deer if they hit it in the leg and it ran off to take a fatal shot from another hunter. That shot was not much different than a complete miss – there are plenty of deer roaming around on three legs out there, sometimes for long periods of time if the predators in the area are not too thick.

    1. Shot a doe several years back on a dead run. When we got to her, she was missing a back leg at the knee that was almost completely healed over. Didn’t even notice when she was running as it certainly didn’t slow her down any!!

  9. first blood gets nothing join any deer hunting club and 99.9% with tell you the only shot that matters is the kill shot. sorry kid make a better shot next time. and dad dont pull the hes 11 card that dont mean a thing if hes old enough to go hes old enough to make a good shot.

  10. I agree with everybody here…. The Kill shot counts the landowner gets the deer ….. having said that…. I would have only taken
    a back leg and a backstrap the boy can keep the rest including cape, meat and horns…. Owner is good by me…
    If it belongs to the landowner then the kid’s tag is not filled….

  11. Although I agree it is the landowners deer I think he should have given it to the 11 year old boy, but should have taught him a lesson in taking appropriate shots. The dad needs to take the boy to the range more, and needs to ensure the rifle is properly sighted in. All in all, I believe this young man will understand the importance of a clean kill and will have this as a life lesson.

  12. This year we went out rifle huntin on public property. A little boy, 14 years old, shot and wounded a doe. She came right behind my dad and I and it took 2 extra shots to finish her off. My dad gladly gave the doe to the 14 year old boy and helped him drag it out. It was that kids first deer! Even though my dad wasted 2 shells it was completely worth it.

    1. While I agree with the majority that it is the landowners legal right to the deer, whether he shot it or not (and in this case he did)…I would most likely have done what your dad did…and let the youngster claim the deer. This helps foster a new generation of hunters, and could be the good experience that keeps this young man in the outdoors and out of trouble.

  13. landowner My brother n law shot deer in penn only one hole in it his. lady and friends tagged it with cell phone . had it in truck asked what he was going too do. he said merry xmas

  14. I would need to know more…did the landowner shoot the deer on the same side as the kid? If so, who is to say the landowner didn’t make the leg shot and the kid had a kill shot….deer can run several hundred yards after a fatal shot before going down…I don’t think we will ever possibly know what might have happened!

  15. At my advanced age I would have unquestionably given the deer to the kid; I have taken more than enough venison in my lifetime!
    I would have probably had a talk with him about marksmanship and the need to cleanly take the deer and the need to prevent the animal from suffering, and even offered to let him use my private shooting range to hone his skills; But I would have never taken a deer from a new hunter!

  16. The killing shot should! though I would have given the deer to the boy do to his age. In time he will come to understand the ethics of the situation and should realize that a humane death for the deer trumps hunter pride. What if it were the mans first deer and the boy had already bagged several? The hunting community has spoken wise and ethical advice on this matter though everyone misses occasionally except me! of course!!! the kid doesn’t need to be reminded he missed, he will see the shot in his dreams until he bags a better buck in the future!

  17. It is general consensus around here that the first LETHAL hit claims the deer. In this case the landowner. Had the boy’s shot been one that would have led to the killing of the deer and it made it on to another property where the landowner put it down it should have been the boy’s. In this case the deer is clearly the landowner’s to claim.
    Iowa law is different and allows a hunter to pursue wounded game onto other properties as long as the hunter goes unarmed. That way you aren’t hunting someone else’s ground and fatally hit game is recovered.


  19. if you killed it you claim it its that simple. Having said that however i think that the young boy should have walked away with the deer, With Mr. Heyrman being a land owner I think it can be safe to say that he has probably shot a deer or two in his lifetime and knows the ins and outs of deer hunting in Wisconsin. In this day and age where the new hunters coming afield are recruited by their elders into a past time enjoyed by them and their forefathers, I think is is important to keep new hunters, especially young kids, interested in hunting by having fun and being successful to want to continue on with this tradition. He should have swallowed is pride and let the kid walk away with the deer. I think watching a new hunter with a big smile on their face from being successful is more important than hanging another set of antlers on the wall

  20. The deer died on private property according to Wisconsin law it doesn’t matter which shot killed the deer, what matters is where it died. Give Heyrman some credit for being decent enough to let a coin flip decide who got the deer, when he could have just claimed the deer outright.

  21. Tough lesson kid. If the kid continues to deer hunt for years to come no doubt will he shoot on bigger.Buck goes to landowner. Sucks but it’s the law. The owner was nice enough to give him a chance. Valuable less to the kid. Don’t take a shot unless you sure it is a kill shot.

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