Boy killed by uncle in hunting accident

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The Independent Online

A schoolboy was shot and killed by his uncle as they were out hunting for rabbits, police revealed yesterday.

Scott Wadley, a "bubbly" 13-year-old, was hit in the chest at short range by a 12-bore shotgun after being caught in the line of fire. An ambulance helicopter was dispatched, with paramedics, but nothing could be done to save him.

Yesterday, his parents, Peter and Vivienne Wadley, insisted they blamed no one for his death. Scott's uncle, who was treated in hospital for shock, had taken his nephew for a day's shooting at the country estate where he worked.

The two of them were at the Pudleston Court estate at Docklow, Herefordshire, on Saturday morning when Scott was shot. Initial reports suggest the teenager was trying to flush out a rabbit in deep woodland and hedge cover when he inadvertently stepped into his uncle's line of fire.

His father, a building surveyor, and mother, an occupational therapist at the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, were being comforted with his elder brother, Karl, 16, and sister, Natalie, 14.

Speaking from her home in Longlevens, Gloucester, Mrs Wadley explained that the family was numb with shock.

"This was just a tragic accident and we don't lay any blame on anybody whatsoever.

"Scott really loved spending time with his uncle on shooting trips such as this. His main hobby was shooting and he had been many times."

West Mercia police said they were investigating the death with an "open mind" but that Scott appeared to have been killed in a tragic accident.