The Sawyer County sheriff says there are thousands of acres of public land in that area available for hunting, but the dispute took place at midday Sunday on four-hundred acres of private land.
When the landowner saw 36-year-old Chai Vang in a tree stand without permission, he radioed to his hunting party.
"He stated over the radio he was going to go and ask the persons to leave," said Sheriff Jim Meier. "He approached the person and asked him to leave at which time the landowners and occupants of the cabin that he was staying at also came on the scene; the suspect got down from the stand, walked about 40 yards, fiddled with his rifle, maybe took the scope off, turned, and opened fire on the group."
That's when Terry Willard radioed for help, but as seven other people came to assist, they became victims as well. Finally, a few other members of the party were able to make a run for help.
"The rescuers, who also came under fire, checked the bodies for signs of life and they grabbed who they could grab and got out of there because they were still under fire."
As the survivors sped toward Birchwood, the shooter reportedly stayed in the woods for another five hours, his exact movements not clear until he was seen by two other hunters.
"They came upon the subject, he reported he was lost, they didn't realize who they were talking to, so out of the goodness of their hearts, they gave him a ride back out at which time they had realized they had Mr. Vang in their presence and offered him a ride to the warden's truck, at which time he was taken into custody."
The suspect, Vang, was described as calm and cooperative, saying nothing that would indicate what specifically led to the gunshots that left victims, dead and wounded, scattered over an area of about a hundred yards.
Monday evening, the family of 55-year-old Denny Drew released a statement through Lakeview Medical Center in Rice Lake saying that he died at St. Joseph's in Marshfield.