Miniature cannon kills Tremonton boy

Jan 24 2012 - 12:01am

TREMONTON -- A 14-year-old was killed Monday while handling a miniature cannon at his Tremonton home.

The apparent accident occurred around 7:30 a.m., said Tremonton Police Chief David Nance. The boy was identified as Robby Ostberg.

Ostberg was in the living room of the family home playing video games with his 16-year-old brother and handling the miniature cannon when it went off, Nance said.

He was struck in the face and pronounced dead at the scene. Ostberg's father was also in the house at the time.

At first police believed the cannon was decorative and could not fire a projectile, but they later determined that was incorrect, Nance said.

"It's designed to have black powder and fire," he said.

Police still hadn't determined Monday why the cannon fired or the type of projectile that was fired. It is hoped that an autopsy will shed light on exactly how Ostberg was killed, Nance said.

"It's a bizarre accident," he said.

The cannon is described as an 18th-century replica with a 6-inch long .50 caliber barrel and a wooden base.

The purpose of the cannon has not been determined, Nance said. The cannon was purchased and was not homemade, he said.

A student at Bear River Middle School said students plan to wear best dress today.

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