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Official Dead in Hunting Accident

A district legislator in the far eastern Primorye region was shot dead during a hunting trip by a friend who allegedly mistook him for a deer, RIA-Novosti reported Tuesday.

The unidentified killer made a blind shot at the bushes when he saw “a deer-shaped silhouette,” said Avrora Rimskaya, spokeswoman for the regional branch of the Investigative Committee.

But Pyotr Nikiitsev, 50, deputy head of the Duma of the Yakovlevsky district was hit instead. The district is rich in deer and even depicts one on its coat of arms.

Nikiitsev was seriously injured and died soon after, Rimskaya said, without saying when the incident took place.

The two hunters thought Nikiitsev would be elsewhere during the hunt, which could account for the accidental kill, the report said. It was not clear why Nikiitsev had moved.

Investigators said they were waiting for results of the autopsy to decide whether to open a criminal case.

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