Neighbors fearful of backyard hunter - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Neighbors fearful of backyard hunter

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Arlington, TN -

Residents of an Arlington neighborhood say they fear for their safety after a hunter recently began shooting on a wooded property off Milton Wilson Road that goes right up to their backyards. The property does have "for sale" signs on it as well as "No Trespassing" signs.

"It doesn't make a difference what time of day, middle of the night, early morning. They can be rapid fire – 'boom, boom, boom' - or they can be a single shot," says Arlington resident Connie Johnson.

READ: City of Arlington firearms code

No one is allowed to hunt in that area or any private property within the town limits, according to Arlington Town Planner Heather Sparkes. She says, "The municipal code states it's unlawful for any unauthorized person to discharge a firearm within the municipality, and an authorized person would be law enforcement or the like."

Sparkes says they have passed along the numerous complaints they've received to the Shelby County Sheriff's Office, who is responsible for enforcing Arlington's ordinance.

"They are going to enforce it, they do have to observe either the person either shooting the firearm or have some evidence that they've actually done that," says Sparkes.

FOX 13 did call the hunter in question, who has given his card to neighbors who express their concerns to him. The hunter did not answer our questions, only saying that "it's not concern" and that the game warden gave him permission.

The Shelby County Sheriff's Office says when it comes to hunting on private property, state law allows hunting on private property so long as it's not done recklessly and there is no ordinance prohibiting hunting on private property in unincorporated Shelby County.

According to the Tennessee Wildlife website, a 1990 "Hunting By Written Permission" law requires hunters to have the owner's written permission to hunt on private property. It also states that the property owner must have a sign including "hunting by written permission only."

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