MEEKER MAN DIES IN SHOOTING ACCIDENT
A gunshot accident claimed the life of a Meeker man over the weekend. 32 year old James Berthelson, also known as “Jeb”, fired a handgun, and was struck in the abdomen, by the bullet which had ricocheted off of a piece of metal. The shooting occurred in a rural area about 40 miles northeast of Meeker late Friday night. Medical personnel responded to a ranch house where Berthelson had been taken by a friend. They were unsuccessful in their attempts to save the victim, who had lost a large amount of blood. Berthelson was pronounced dead at the scene
The full text of the Rio Blanco Sheriff’s Office press release is below:
At 11:32 Friday night the Rio Blanco County Sheriff’s Office Communications Center received a 911 ca1l stating a man had accidently shot himself in the right upper leg area. The caller was relaying the information from a friend who was with the victim and was driving the victim back to the ranch house. The shooting occurred in a rural area about 40 miles northeast of Meeker and on the border of the White River National Forest, and about a 30 minute drive back to the ranch house which is 20 miles northeast of Meeker on County Road 42. Sheriff’s Deputies and Colorado State Troopers responded along with a Meeker Fire and Rescue Ambulance. The pickup driving the victim and the Ambulance arrived at approximately the same time and rescue crews found the victim had lost a large amount of blood and was unresponsive. They immediately began performing C.R.P. and an Air Life Helicopter from Saint Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction was requested and they were dispatched to the ranch house. Medical personnel from both the Meeker Ambulance crew and The Saint Mary’s Air Life Flight Crew continued to try and revive and stabilize the victim until 1:44am when all the efforts had failed and the victim. 32 year old James “Jeb” Berthelson of Meeker was pronounced dead at the scene. Based on the initial investigation, it appears the victim had fired a round from a semi-automatic handgun and the round ricocheted off a piece of metal and struck the victim on his right side near his belt line and exited out his back on the left side. The victim’s body was taken to Meeker and later this morning will be transported to Grand Junction for an autopsy.