A New York woman is dead after she was shot by a hunter who mistook her for a deer while she was walking her dogs on Wednesday evening.
Rosemary Billquist, 43, lived near the border of New York and Pennsylvania and was shot just before 5:30 p.m. The shooter, identified as 34-year-old Thomas Jadlowski, heard her scream and ran to her. He applied pressure to the wound and called 911, The Buffalo News reports. Billquist was shot roughly 100 yards from her home.
Authorities say that the shooting occurred after sunset, noting that it’s illegal to hunt at night in the state of Pennsylvania. Her husband, Jamie Billquist, told The Buffalo News that “they tried saving her [but] it was just too bad … It’s horrific. It will be with me the rest of my life.” He added, “She was always out to help somebody. She never wanted credit and was always quiet about it. She’s just an angel. An angel for sure.”
Officials say that Jadlowski is cooperating with their investigation and that no charges have been filed yet.
She was rushed to a University of Pittsburgh Medical Center hospital in Erie, Pennsylvania where personnel were unable to save her. Jamie was watching TV when an ambulance pulled into his driveway and a paramedic that he knew told him “we’ve got a gunshot wound,” and they ran to the field. Her husband rode with her to the hospital.
Jamie recalled his wife as an avid athlete with a zest for life, estimating that she ran over 60 marathons. He says that he knows the Jadlowski family but said simply “It’s a two-second decision that he’ll regret for the rest of his life.”
If authorities do decide to press charges, Jadlowski will likely face involuntary manslaughter, which is defined in the Pennsylvania Penal Code as follows:
A person is guilty of involuntary manslaughter when as a direct result of the doing of an unlawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner, or the doing of a lawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner, he causes the death of another person.
Involuntary manslaughter is a first-degree misdemeanor and carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.