JUAB COUNTY, Utah (ABC 4 News) - A Clinton man says shooting his brother was an accident. He told police about talking of trust when he pulled out his handgun and shot his brother through the left temple.
Juab County Sheriff says Eric Charlton was heavily intoxicated when he apparently shot his brother Cameron Charlton through the left temple.
The two were sitting around a campfire at the Oasis Campsite near Yuba Lake Monday morning, between 2:00 a.m. and 3:00 a.m., when Cameron was shot.
A 16-year-old friend of Cameron was also sitting at the campfire. All three were drinking.
According to the Juab County Sheriff's Department Eric used a .45 caliber 1911 style handgun. He only fired it once.
The probable cause statement is below:
Juab County Sheriff's Office
Probable Cause Statement
On May 28, 2012 the Juab County Sheriffs office was called to a shooting at the Yuba State Park. When I arrived on scene there
were several other Deputies and a Utah State Parks Ranger on scene along with the Levan Ambulance and Air Med was just
arriving on scene. l saw the EMT's working on a male patient who appeared to have a single gunshot Wound to his left temple with an exit wound on the right side of his head. The victim in the Ambulance was Identified as 17 year old Cameron Charlton.
As I approached the area of the incident I saw a male identified as Eric sitting on a rook next to the road. He was with Deputy
Davidson and had a large amount of blood on his face and hands. I also noticed that Deputy Painter had a 16 year old juvenile with him who was an eye witness. The two were separated and were not allowed to speak with each other.
I spoke with Deputy Painter who interviewed the 16 year old juvenile. Deputy Painter told me that the three were sitting around
the fire and had been drinking beer and that Eric had also been drinking Captain Morgan Rum. The juvenile said that Cameron and Eric who are brothers were talking about trust when Eric picked the gun up and swung it towards Cameron and it went off. The Juvenile also said that Eric immediately yelled to call 911 and was screaming for help. The Juvenile said that Eric was trying to stop the bleeding and gave mouth to mouth breaths to his brother.
After talking with Deputy Painter l went to the fire pit area Where the incident occurred and observed the scene. l photographed the area and collected all of the evidence.
After I had processed the scene I went to the Juab County Jail Where I interviewed Mr. Eric Charlton. He said that he was sitting
around the fire with his brother and his brother's friend. Eric said that he was showing his brother several different firearms
techniques with a colt 1911 .45 caliber hand gun. Eric said that he Juab County Sheriffs Office
initially dropped the magazine out of the weapon and pulled the slide to the rear. And showed Cameron and the juvenile that the
weapon was empty before showing them the new techniques that he had just learned.
Eric then said that after he was done showing them the techniques he put the magazine back into the weapon and does not remember charging the weapon with a live round in the chamber.
He then said he placed the weapon on the ground and was talking to his brother about trust. He said he picked the gun up and swung it towards his brother when the weapon discharged striking his brother in the left temple. He said he was surprised by the weapon discharging and does not know when he put a round in the chamber.
Eric said that he started screaming for someone to call 911 and to help him save his brother. Eric said that he layed him on the
ground and started to render aid. He said that he held his head and tried to stop the blood loss and asked the juvenile to start
chest compressions. Eric said that he continued to try to save his brother's life until EMT's took over.
Eric claims that he did not intend to shoot his brother and appears to be very distraught about this incident.
The victim's body has been taken to the Utah State Medical Examiner's office for an autopsy. The results are still pending.
A 45 caliber 1911 style weapon, magazine, 45 caliber casing, and a 45 caliber bullet was placed into evidence along with numerous other items.