Parents of 14 year old shot with rifle at Burnet County ranch file suit

The parents of a 14-year-old, who was shot with a .22 caliber rifle while spending the weekend at his friend's family's ranch, have filed a lawsuit for negligence and assault.

Court documents state the victim and six other teens were visiting Arrowhead Ranch in Burnet County when they were given access to firearms and alcohol and left unsupervised.

“On October 9, around 6 o' clock, I knew that my son was on his way home from a weekend at the Farney ranch, and I answered the phone and said, ‘Son, are you on your way home?’ And all I got was, ‘Mom, I've been shot,” Melissa Bradley said.  

As her son recovered from a gunshot wound to the chest, he began to tell her what had occurred that weekend at arrowhead ranch, owned by William Bryan Farney.

“There was a room full of many, many firearms and alcohol that was available to all these minors and there was no supervision while these children were using these weapons,” Bradley said.

Bradley said Farney's teenage son had gotten upset that her son was present when an exotic animal was shot at the ranch, and, because of that, her son was punished by Farney's teen in multiple ways.

“He was punished by being tied up, he was slapped across the face, a loaded gun was pointed at him on two occasions, the last time was when the gun was shot at my son. He also was asked to run around the farm naked, at that time was when the firearm went off,” said Bradley. 

Melissa said the boys originally told everyone the shooting occurred when Farney's son was trying to lay the gun down on an a/c vent and it went off by accident. After being questioned by authorities, Melissa said five of the six boys changed their story, saying the shot was fired as punishment.

“No one is relying upon that story anymore… What we have here is an example of power and influence being abused,” said Melissa’s attorney Randy Howry.

Farney and his son still say the a/c vent story is what happened and Farney even filed a defamation case against Melissa for saying he made that story up.

“He was a victim in a shooting and a very reckless conduct that was taking place at a ranch that was unsupervised, and, I believe, that the bullying that my son has experienced since October 9 and before then, is the same bullying that I have been dealing with since that day,” Bradley said. 

Melissa has now filed a civil case for negligence and assault against Farney's son and negligence against Farney himself.

“This is about protecting my son and it's about protecting my family and it's about protecting someone else out there, because, since the shooting, there has been no remorse, there has been no change and I worry about other children. If he gets angry again, what will happen next?” said Bradley. 

FOX 7 reached out to Farney's attorney, but did not get a response.

Melissa is seeking money for damages and an injunction so the Farney's can no longer interact with her or her son. She moved her son to a different school this week and said doctors still aren't sure if her son will ever get the feeling back in his hand.

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