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May 31, 2012
William Briggs Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter
Augusta, Maine - In a crowded Cumberland County Superior Courtroom, Mr. William Briggs (62) of Windham plead guilty today to Manslaughter, a class A felony, for the November 5, 2011 Hunting Related Shooting Incident in which he shot and killed Peter Kolofsky (46) of Sebago. By virtue of a plea agreement, Briggs was sentenced to 3 years in the Cumberland County Jail with all but 45 days suspended and 4 years probation. Additionally, he will serve 500 hours of community service with a focus on hunter education and training.
On November 5, 2011 Briggs was hunting in the woods near the Hogfat Hill Road in Sebago when he failed to properly identify his target and shot and killed Kolofsky. The Maine Warden Service initiated a multiday investigation which included more than a dozen Game Wardens, Warden Service Aircraft and the use of Warden Service K9, Forensic Mapping, and Evidence Recovery Teams. Mr. Briggs was fully cooperative during the investigation which revealed he mistook Kolofsky for a deer when he shot him.
Lt. Scott of the Warden Service indicated the incident was a textbook case of failing to make proper target identification. He said Briggs shot at “movement” and failed to identify Kolofsky with an unobstructed view of his head and torso, as required by Maine’s Target Identification Law. Kolofsky was wearing blaze orange at the time of the incident. He added that Briggs would be subject to a minimum 10 year suspension of his hunting privileges as a result of the conviction. Lt. Scott also commented on the excellent work and dedication provided by the Maine Attorney General’s Office during their prosecution of this case.
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