Utah boy, 14, accidentally shot and killed during target practice

The teen was shot while sitting in his family's car.

September 25, 2018, 7:10 AM

A 14-year-old boy was struck and killed by a stray bullet in what was apparently a freak accident while riding in the back seat of a car with his family Sunday.

Zackary Kempke and his family were driving near the Monte Cristo mountain range in a remote area of Rich County in Utah when he was struck in the head, according to the Rich County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office said the bullet came from someone who was shooting at a target several hundred feet away from where Kempke was shot.

The individual who fired the shot and multiple witnesses said that they did not know there was a road down the range, according to the sheriff's office, and could not see the vehicle passing by due to massive trees and brush blocking their view.

Kempke’s uncle, Cory Hopkins, told the Deseret News family members were initially angry and thought the shooter should have been more careful, but have let go of the anger.

“We’ve all had time to think, and you know ... that family’s going to live with this for the rest of their life, and I think that’s tragic on that point too,” Hopkins told the Deseret News.

Authorities have not filed charges at this time because the shooting appears to be unintentional.

"It appears to have been unintentional," the sheriff's office said. "When the investigation is complete, all information and evidence will be turned over to the Rich County Prosecutor for further action or charges."

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events