- Shooting at Yuba State Park leaves one dead and his brother arrested
By Myrna Trauntvein
A 17-year old male is dead and his 27-year old brother is in custody after an early morning shooting at Yuba State Park.
The victim is Cameron Bryce Charlton, Hooper, and his brother, Eric Charlton is being held as the suspect in the shooting.
"At 3:28 a.m., the Juab County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from the Yuba State Park," said Lt. Brent Pulver, Juab County Sheriff's Office Information Deputy.
After receiving the call, said Pulver, both medical and law enforcement personnel were dispatched to the area to investigate the reported shooting. In addition, helicopters and an ambulance were dispatched to the campground.
Deputies from the Juab County Sheriff's Office arrived and found the victim, with a gun shot wound to the head.
"The victim was pronounced deceased by medical personnel on scene," said Pulver.
The victim was transported to the State Medical Examiners Office.
"The investigation indicated the victim was shot by his brother, 27-year old Eric Charlton," Pulver said. "It appears alcohol was a contributing factor in this case."
Eric Charlton was booked into the Juab County Jail on the charge of Manslaughter.
The two brothers arrived at Yuba on Friday where they were camping near Yuba Reservoir with a group of about 20 or more people. At the time of the shooting during the early morning hours, the victim, his brother and a 16-year-old friend were still awake and outside their tents sitting around a campfire.
Sometime after 3 a.m. the gun discharged, killing Cameron Charlton.
Investigators are treating the incident as a homicide, but said it was not immediately clear whether the shooting was intentional or accidental.
Alden Orme, Juab County Sheriff, said it did not appear that the shooting was the result of a fight, but said a lot of alcohol was involved.
"It appears, at this point, to have been more of just visiting, a discussion," Orme said. "The gun was then brought out and it discharged."
Orme said Eric Charlton, who, at the time of the shooting, was serving in the military, owned the gun and took it along camping for self-defense.
"It's unclear why the gun was displayed," said Orme. "But anytime you mix alcohol and firearms, you have a recipe for disaster."
Medical personnel were sent to the area about 3:30 a.m.
Orme said Eric Charlton was quite emotional when he was questioned about the shooting.
'He is very upset and is very distraught. It is very heartbreaking," Orme said.
Law enforcement officials are working to determine what took place moments before the fatal shot was fired. The 16-year-old witness, who was sitting with the brothers at the campsite, told deputies that the two were not arguing.
Deputies did, however, find several cans of beer and, Pulver said, Eric Charlton was extremely intoxicated before he allegedly pulled the trigger.
"You have a whole family that is traumatized by this," said Orme.
Pulver said the shooting incident is being treated as a homicide, but that it was not immediately clear whether the shooting was intentional or accidental.
"This case is still under investigation," said Pulver.