WINTHROP — Okanogan County Sheriff’s deputies were able to confirm that a Bellingham man accidentally injured himself with a high-powered rifle Sunday night, Sheriff Frank Rogers says.
Anthony R. Christofferson, 22, had been drinking with friends at a campsite about 15 miles north of Winthrop when one of them fired a gun inside the campground before the group was told to put away their guns, Rogers said.
He said someone gathered all their guns and put them in a tent.
Christofferson later went into his tent to go to bed, and grabbed a 7 mm magnum rifle by the barrel to move it, Rogers said. The rifle was loaded and the safety was off, so when he touched the trigger, the gun went off, he said.
It’s not clear whether a bullet actually entered Christofferson’s groin or whether the muzzle blast caused the injury, Rogers said.
He was taken to Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee, and then transferred, a hospital spokeswoman said. Rogers said he thought he was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, but by Tuesday, he was no longer a patient there.
Deputies initially couldn’t find the campsite to confirm the incident, but were able to locate it and interview Christofferson’s friends and nearby campers, he said.