CHATTANOOGA, TN. (WRCB) -- Still in his hospital bed a Murray County hunter makes a plea for the man who shot him in the woods to please step forward.
Perry Hudson was shot on Saturday while hunting in the Chattahoochie National Forest.
He has no idea who shot him, and he says he's lucky the bullet didn't kill him.
Hudson is still recovering at Erlanger. He says there's no doubt the man who shot him was acting recklessly, even refusing to come out of the woods when he cried for help.
Hudson bandaged his own wound, then drove 50 minutes to the nearest hospital for help.
"You don't shoot at sound," he says. "That could have been a boy hunting in the woods with his dad."
The Chatsworth native is sending a strong message to the man who put a bullet through his arm and chest.
"He should have his hunting rights taken away," Hudson says. "His should have his gun taken away, and he should never be let back in the woods again."
After emergency surgery Saturday night, Hudson goes under the knife again for skin grafting Wednesday. The avid hunter says he'll be back in the woods before season's end.
"I started hunting with my dad when I was a boy," he says.
The 41-year-old never misses deer season. He and hunting partner, David Wagnon, and another friend traveled to the outskirts of Murray County Saturday morning.
Hudson's friends went to the top of the mountain to find prey, but Hudson decided to hunt near their cabin.
"Next thing I know I got shot," he says. "It knocked me back, and I start bleeding."
The hunter says that's when he started screaming for help, but the only the woods answered back.
"I never heard a word and I know they heard me," he says. "So I screamed a little louder."
Hudson bandaged his arm and drove himself to the hospital. Authorities immediately arrested his friend Wagnon under suspicion. Wagnon has since been cleared of the shooting, but faces unrelated charges.
Hudson says thick brush made it impossible for the shooter to see him, which is why he knows the person who pulled the trigger is reckless.
"Ninety-nine percent of all other hunters know you don't shoot at noise," Hudson says. "That one percent is the idiot that shot me."
David Wagnon was cleared based on Hudson's account, and the gun. Investigators believe Hudson was shot with a rifle. Wagnon was carrying a shotgun that day.
The Georgia Department of Natural Resources are working several leads including a vehicle description.
If you have any information, give them a call at 706-624-1367 or 1-800-241-4113.