Boy Scouts of America dismissed from lawsuit filed by Utah hunting guide who was shot in the eye during a pheasant hunt

The Boy Scouts of America and the local Trapper Trails Council have been dismissed as defendants in a lawsuit filed by a Cache County hunting guide who was shot during a Scouting-oriented pheasant hunt in 2014.

Hunting guide Craig Bingham filed the lawsuit in 2016 against the BSA, local council and a number of Scoutmasters. He alleges the defendants were negligent during a pheasant hunt on March 22, 2014, when someone in the party shot him in the eye, hand and thigh.

Bingham was permanently blinded in one eye by birdshot when the nine people he was leading opened fire with shotguns on some pheasants at a private hunting reserve in Cache County, according to the lawsuit.

First District Judge Thomas Willmore on Monday granted the BSA and Trapper Council’s motion for summary judgment, finding the two entities had no knowledge or notice that the hunting activity was planned or would occur.

Instead, it was the local charter organization, the Middle Fork Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that “was in complete control, knowledge, notice and approval of the hunting activity.”

The judge also granted summary judgment to a father and son who were on the hunting trip. The father was “equally peppered with pellets,” according to the judge’s ruling, and had argued he therefore could not have fired the shots that struck Bingham. There was no evidence the son ever fired his gun.

Who actually did shoot Bingham is still not known.

Judge Willmore ruled that Bingham’s lawsuit can continue against the Scout leaders and others in the hunting group who are named in the lawsuit.