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“Accidental shot” kills young woman walking at night with friend

PJ police have arrested a hunter suspected of being the cause of the tragic death of a 28-year-old woman last Wednesday evening.

Paula Fernandes, 28, was walking along the EN15 (in Leirós, Vila Real) with a friend when she was hit in the neck, apparently by a bullet fired from some distance away.

Theories at the outset centred on hunters of wild boar, known to frequent the area at that time of night.

Fernandes was walking along a stretch of road that was poorly lit, and was alive when her father got to her, reports tabloid Correio da Manhã.

Local parish councillor Francisco Coutinho told the paper he was only 200 metres away and saw Paula “alive in her father’s arms”.

“She had her eyes open, was moving her arms, but covered in blood”.

The injured young woman was rushed to hospital where she died in the early hours of Thursday morning.

PJ police immediately set out to establish what exactly had happened.

With Fernandes’ friend in shock as a result of the incident, agents began interviewing hunters and today (Friday) the 50-year-old man believed to have been the accidental shooter will be appearing before magistrates in Vila Real.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com