MALVERNE - A Malverne firefighter has been charged in the shooting death of a fellow firefighter during a hunting trip upstate last fall.

Authorities say Charles Bruce, 52, was shot in the chest by fellow volunteer firefighter Robert Gerbino, of Garden City, who mistook Bruce for a deer. The shooting took place in a wooded area of a privately owned property in the town of Westford.

Bruce, of Franklin Square, was a 17-year veteran of the Malverne Fire Department.

The Otsego County District Attorney tells News 12 that Gerbino has been charged with criminally negligent homicide.

Reports say Gerbino pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Tuesday and was released on his own recognizance.

He is scheduled to return to court on May 5.