Officials identify girl, 3, shot at Yellowstone

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Associated Press

Posted on September 9, 2013 at 7:04 PM

Updated Monday, Sep 9 at 7:06 PM

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. (AP) — Yellowstone National Park officials on Monday identified a 3-year-old girl who died from a gunshot wound in the park as Ella Marie Tucker, of Pocatello, Idaho.

Park officials said the shooting remained under investigation. They did not release the girl's parents' names or further details of what happened, including how they believe the girl got ahold of the gun.

Park officials say Ella's mother called for help on Saturday to report her daughter had shot herself with a handgun. Park rangers who responded to Grant Village Campground on the western shore of Yellowstone Lake were unable to resuscitate her.

It was the first shooting death in Yellowstone since 1978. Two shooting deaths occurred in the park that year, records show.

Carrying a gun in a national park has been legal under a federal law that took effect in 2010.

The shooting happened during a time of year when summer tourism in Yellowstone begins to slow. About 3 million people visit the park every year.

Heart attacks are the most common cause of death in Yellowstone.

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