DOYLESTOWN — As 18-year-old Jason Kutt and his girlfriend sat beside the lake in Nockamixon State Park about 5:15 p.m. Oct. 24, "They were just a young couple with their whole lives ahead of them trying to enjoy a peaceful sunset," Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub said.
Then one shot, believed to have been fired from about 550 feet away, hit Kutt in the back of the neck, Weintraub said at an October 26 press conference during which he announced that Kutt had been declared dead that day and commended Kutt's family for making the decision to have Kutt's organs donated to give the gift of life to others.
Kutt was a 2020 graduate of Pennridge High School, his parents said in a Facebook posting shared by a family friend.
"He loved playing his guitars, video games, and taking walks in nature to take amazing pictures and spending time with his girlfriend," the posting said.
After Kutt's girlfriend heard the shot and saw Kutt fall, she looked up and saw a man in hunting gear, Weintraub said.
Police searched the area, including with the aid of a Pennsylvania State Police helicopter and a police dog, but did not find the man, a release said.
Some types of hunting were permitted in that part of the park on the day the shooting happened, Weintraub said.
Investigators are now seeking help from people who have any information about the incident at the Old Ridge Road entrance to the park, he said.
"We want to get to the bottom of this. We don't have any suspects. We don't even know if a crime has been committed yet, but we need to understand how Jason Kutt died," Weintraub said, "and we need your help to do that."
At 6-feet, 3-inches tall and wearing a black hat with an orange stripe, it would have been hard to mistake Kutt for an animal such as a deer, Weintraub said, but said nothing is being prejudged. He asked that the person responsible for the shooting come forward and tell authorities what happened.
"Jason Kutt and his family deserve it. We'd love to hear from you," Weintraub said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Bucks County Detectives at 215-348-6868 or 215-340-8140. Tips may also be sent to the Bucks County District Attorney's crimewatchpa.com page.
Weintraub commended the Pennsylvania State Police, the Bedminster Township Police Department, Tinicum Township Police Department, Pennsylvania Game Commission, the Bucks County Special Operations Dive Team, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and National Resources and Bucks County Detectives for their assistance.
The Bedminster Township Police Department, the Pennsylvania State Police and Detectives from the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office are investigating the case.