A Detroit police officer shot and killed a dog enclosed in its own yard behind a 6-foot gated fence.
Police say the pit bull had latched on to a police K-9 and would not let go. The incident was captured on a Ring security camera on August 3 and shows police walking past the house with their K-9 searching for a weapon that had been tossed during an earlier foot chase.
The video shows a white pit bull running up to the fence and barking at the police dog while the cop is unable to control K-9 by pulling it away from the fence.
Within one-second, the pit bull had latched on the K-9’s snout and would not let go, prompting the cop to pull out her gun and fire.
The sound of a gunshot prompts numerous officers to rush over. While the officers are rushing to the scene, another pet is seen running through the yard and squeezing through the fence and running past the arriving officers.
The pit bull, meanwhile, can be seen rolling around on the ground in pain for the remaining twelve-seconds without receiving any aid. The dog later dies from the gunshot.
Police say they had asked the dog’s owner to secure the pit bull but the dog sprung free from its owner’s hands and ran up to the fence.
The officer has not been identified and will not be reprimanded. Police also claimed the fence was “inconsistent with city code.”
According to Detroit Free Press:
“Her partner was being attacked and we demand that our officers protect not only themselves but their partners and citizens. At this point it was a clear and present danger; her dog was being viciously harmed,” said Detroit Police Commander Darin Szilagyi in an interview Friday. “It’s unfortunate it came to this, we don’t like to see any animal hurt.”
The home’s front gate, a 6-foot wrought iron fence, is situated on the border of the front yard and the sidewalk, which is inconsistent with city code, Szilagyi said. Having an aggressive dog with improper restraints puts the public at risk, Szilagyi said, and the narrative of this incident would be entirely different had the victim been a small child or senior citizen walking along the sidewalk.
Former Mayor of San Antonio, Julián Castro took to Twitter calling for the officer’s termination and arrest.
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib retweeted the post saying that she is waiting to see how the Detroit Board of Police Commissioners will handle this. “The whole point of the Board is oversight of our police department, not looking the other way,” Tlaib wrote.
“No matter what, when force is used on a person or animal, it is ugly. No one likes it, I don’t like it, I’ve been doing this for 25 years and I don’t like it, but unfortunately it’s necessary if you have life or death situations, and this was a life or death situation, that is the option that a police officer has to use, and I commend the officer for making a decision and coming back to work and taking care of her partner.”
The K9’s wounds consisted of perforation wounds on its upper jawlines and a tear through the skin of its upper snout.
The city paid out $60,000 in a federal civil rights lawsuit last year, where three dogs were killed in a raid, according to DailyMail. One of the officers involved in the raid had 80 reports filed of destruction of animals filed throughout his career.