TOWNSEND — The father of an 11-year-old boy shot and killed in Broadwater County Thursday is now being charged with negligent homicide.
Cadet Lacunza, of Radersburg, made an initial appearance in Broadwater County Justice Court Friday.
Court documents say Lacunza was camping with his family Thursday, near Crow Creek Falls in the Elkhorn Mountains.
Lacunza told authorities he decided to fire a pistol. According to court records, he said he had not seen his son before the shot, but afterwards, he saw the boy fall over. He found the boy had been struck in the head, and immediately began looking for help.
Family friends drove them toward Radersburg. They were out of cell phone reception, so it was some time before they could reach 911.
An ambulance met them on State Highway 285 and began lifesaving efforts, but the boy did not survive.
Detectives from the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Broadwater County Sheriff’s Office in investigating the case. They found Lacunza likely did not see his son when he fired, because tree branches were in the way. However, they said he was charged with negligent homicide because he shot the gun without knowing where the boy was.
According to Justice of the Peace Kirk Flynn, the county attorney and the defense attorney agreed before Lacunza’s court appearance that he could be released on his own recognizance, with conditions.