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Merrillan man charged after son shoots daughter

JACKSON COUNTY, WI (WTAQ) - A western Wisconsin man is due in court next Monday, for an incident in which his six-year-old son wounded his four-year-old sister with a shotgun. 

48-year-old Fred Maphis of Merrillan is charged in Jackson County with misdemeanor counts of leaving a loaded firearm near a child, and obstructing an officer. 

Prosecutors said Maphis was negligent when he left the shotgun out on August 30th. Officials said he then told his son to lie about accidentally shooting his sister. 

She suffered non-life threatening injuries in the incident, and was being treated at a La Crosse hospital. 

Investigators said Maphis was watching TV when his son shot his sister in another room.

The man told authorities he normally locks his weapons -- but he forgot to unload his shotgun this time. Officials said the gun was apparently left on top of a dog kennel, after Maphis shot at birds which were going after his chickens.