Pet owner waiting for answers in fatal dog shooting

CHAMPAIGN — Kathy Saathoff is most anxious to find out why a Champaign police officer felt the need to break up a dog fight Saturday with a gun.

Police Chief Anthony Cobb said members of his department are working to find out the same thing.

“We should have everything resolved pretty quickly,” Cobb said of the incident Saturday night in west Champaign that left Saathoff’s chocolate Labrador dead and the pit bull that attacked it locked up, still unclaimed by an owner.

About 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Saathoff’s daughter, Kelsey Markou, 18, was walking their Labrador, named Dog, near the corner of John Street and Crescent Drive.

“She had just turned the corner onto Crescent and was heading south back to our house,” said Saathoff, who lives across the street from Centennial High School. “A pit bull came from across the street from the apartment complex on the corner of John and Crescent.”

The pit bull had no collar or tags. She doesn’t know who owns it and said neighbors had also seen it previously but never with a person.
Saathoff said her daughter was trying to hurry back home with Dog, who was on a leash and wearing a pinch collar, when the pit bull started moving aggressively toward him.

“My dog is not a fighter. He’s a cuddler, a sweet dog who loved to play with other dogs. He’s never aggressive to other dogs. He probably didn’t know what to think at first,” she said of the 5-year-old Labrador that her family has had more than four years.

When the pit bull started going for Dog’s throat in a field a few yards from the street, Saathoff said, Kelsey reacted.

“She didn’t have a phone on her at the time. She’s kicking the pit bull trying to get it off. There wasn’t a lot of people out. A gentleman walking ... called 911 and he came over and tried to kick the dog,” Saathoff said.

Saathoff said Kelsey eventually let go of Dog’s leash because the pinch collar was keeping him from defending himself.

When the police arrived, Saathoff said, Kelsey told the officer which dog was hers and where the pit bull had come from.

“He got 5 to 6 feet away from the dogs and just started shooting at them,” Saathoff recounted what her daughter had told her.
Although the number of shots fired has not been released, Saathoff said her daughter estimated there were eight.

Dog was hit in the neck by one of the shots and died there. An animal control officer got the pit bull and took it to the county animal pound where it’s been since Saturday night.

“He’ll be held for seven days to see if an owner comes forward to claim him,” said Stephanie Joos, director of Champaign County animal control.

The dog sustained injuries, she said, but remained in stable condition Tuesday. If no one claims the dog, it will be euthanized, Joos said.
Saathoff said her daughter ran home to get her after the shooting. They took Dog to the University of Illinois veterinary clinic, where she said a necropsy was done.

“Our dog died from a gunshot wound. Our dog didn’t die from a dog fight,” she said of the preliminary results her family received from the veterinarian.

Saathoff said her family wants to know why the officer felt he needed to use a gun to break up a dog fight, especially knowing at least one of the dogs was a family pet.

“Our biggest issue is that we don’t understand why there weren’t other non-violent means tried first,” Saathoff said.

She said Kelsey told her she did not feel personally endangered by the pit bull and that the dogs were tangling in the field at the southwest corner of the intersection, a few yards away from the sidewalk and street.

“I want them to be accountable and really look at the way the situation was handled. We’re traumatized and I have a daughter that’s going to be traumatized the rest of her life. She’ll never forget it. She hasn’t been sleeping. That’s a hard pill to swallow,” said Saathoff.

Cobb has declined to identify the officer who fired the shots while the police are working on their internal investigation. Any time a duty weapon is discharged, there is a review to see if the officer followed departmental policy, the chief said.

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americanproud wrote on November 20, 2012 at 3:11 pm

The owners of the pit are not going to come forward and claim him because they will be fined for not keeping their dog at home or walked on a leash.  The pit is obviously not from a loving family where he learned good manners.  Who knows what abuse he might have suffered in his life that caused him to attack an innocent dog.  I feel sorry for both dogs.

ksansone63 wrote on November 20, 2012 at 4:11 pm

The police officer who shot this dog is way out of line!!!  I would be, and am, furious as a Lab owner.  These dogs are gentle and not at all dangerous.  He should've shot in the air, if he felt the need to shoot anything.  The owner, and daughter, of the Lab is now traumatized by losing their beloved dog and by Police.


Shame on you, Champaign Police Officer!  I hope you don't have pets.

Smithmi42493 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 4:11 am

Look, ksansone63, I can understand why you are upset but please try to think logically. Discharging a weapon in the air is a dangerous thing to do. Once that bullet loses momentum then gravity takes effect. I can understand why people are upset as to why they did not use non-lethal methods of dispacting the fight. Pepper spraying the Pit would have probably just angerd it more and would probably go into a deeper rage and ultimatyley kill the Lab. Trying to stand between the animals would cause harm to the officer and probably someone else. Lastly, the officer made a big mistake yes, but his target surley would of had to been the Pit; it is very sad what had happened but the officer made his decison to stop the fight before the Pit caused harm to something or someone else.

EdRyan wrote on November 20, 2012 at 4:11 pm

Courts place little value on the life of a dog, but the emotional trauma to the humans of that canine companion unjustly executed before their eyes on the streets is priceless.  Open your wallets Champaign taxpayers.  

jms wrote on November 20, 2012 at 6:11 pm

Really disturbing story. I can't believe the officer would shoot the lab. How traumatic for the family, especially the teenager.

 

Sid Saltfork wrote on November 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm

The dogs were fighting.  The officer fired up to eight shots according to the young lady.  One of the shots hit the young lady's dog.  Are police officers trained in breaking up dog fights?  Dogs are not immobile while fighting.  Is there any chance that during the turmoil the officer accidently hit the wrong dog?  When it happens in war, it is called "friendly fire".  Of course, that involves people not animals.  Perhaps, the incident should be treated as an accident.  I am sure the officer feels regret.  If he had to do it all over again, he would have used a chemical spray if it were available.  It may have caused discomfort to the young lady, and the man who was initially helping; but it may have saved the dog.  It was a regrettable accident.  Fortunately, no people were injured. 

I would caution police officers, and firefighters on assisting cats out of trees following this controversy.

curiousJ wrote on November 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm

This incident happened not 2 blocks from my house, and I heard 4 of the shots myself. This is a very active, populous area in which people, many of whom are children, are constantly walking. The fact that this officer felt the need to first use his firearm rather than _any_ other method is unconscionable. As a member of this community, I must say that he displayed extremely poor judgement, and I would hope that he has been removed from duty while this is investigated because I certainly don't feel comfortable with him "protecting" my family.

rsp wrote on November 20, 2012 at 10:11 pm

Because it was an animal he is still on duty while they investigate it. The reports are that he was only 6 feet away when he fired in an attempt to save the dog. It's possible both dogs were hit with the same bullet. I would hope that people kept it in mind that he was trying to save the dog, not trying to kill it. 

curiousJ wrote on November 20, 2012 at 10:11 pm

I'm not questioning his motive ... only his judgement which is terribly important given the responsibility of the job that he performs and the trust that we as a community put in him and others wearing the uniform.

He should not be on the job right now; Just my opinion.

CUComedy wrote on November 20, 2012 at 11:11 pm

"I would caution police officers, and firefighters on assisting cats out of trees following this controversy." You should be beyond ashamed of yourself for saying that. Trying to belittle what by all accounts seems to be an innocent dog being killed... those are the words of a bad human being. 

If the story printed above is the whole story, which at this time and from the reaction of the owners it is, someone please explain to me how this isn't animal cruelty?

The dog was not attacking the cop. The dog itself was being attacked. Now, I understand when the police showed up they may not have known which dog was attacking which, but there is no way this can be proper procedure. At the very least, if he was trying to scare the dogs by shooting a few rounds, isn't it a reckless discharge of a firearm?

I'm sure there will magically be some new evidence that pops up when it's investigated so he doesn't get punished, but if people can go to jail for putting dogs in fighting rings, there needs to be some punishment for murdering someone's pet. I think if this would have happened to your long time pet... you would be a lot more angry about it. 

Sid Saltfork wrote on November 21, 2012 at 8:11 am

You, and others are playing "armchair quarterback".  You were not there.  You are reacting to a dog, family pet, being killed.  Lives are being lost in Afghanistan regularly; but you are outraged by an accidental shooting of a dog.  Every time there is a story about a dog being abused, or killed the condemning comments light up like a pinball machine.  When anything is mentioned about a person being killed either here, or in their country's service abroad there are few comments.  The dog is dead.  It was an accident.

commonfolk wrote on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 am

Sid I've read your comments many times and agree with you most of them. However this was no accident. Anyone who has ever handled a gun and properly trained with it knows you never aim it at a living creature unless you are willing to kill it. It was the way I was brought up and I'm sure it is the way they train these police officers. This officer knowing fired a weapon at two dogs. If you can't hit moving pit bull from 5-6 feet then this officer needs more time on the range. This is no more an "accident" then some drunk driver killing someone. He pulled the gun and fired many times. He had many choices that may have resulted in both dogs living through this. Yes the pit bull may have killed the lab. We'll never know because an officer of "peace" jumped to a lethal finale as his first judgement.

curiousJ wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

The attacking dog did not kill Dog; a gunshot to the neck did. As stated in the article, Dog was taken to the U of I for a necropsy so there is no supposition or 'arm-chair' anything with respect to this particular fact.

speedg35 wrote on November 26, 2012 at 7:11 pm

Read about all the pinball machine comments when a police officer abuses a fellow human!!!

speedg35 wrote on November 26, 2012 at 7:11 pm

Sld Saltfork, that is the most pathetic excuse I've heard!!  However, some if it true.  This is a prime example of the absolute lack of training that happens with most local police departments.  We give these officers, who may be well intentioned, a firearm and the "right" to go shooting first and deal with the questions and consequences afterward.


As with any job, if I screw up, I have to face the consequences, which could mean the loss of my job.  To dismiss this as just an accident, is moronic.  Specially, firing 8 shots in the presence of a young girl.  When using lethal force, there is NO having the ability to do it over!


Once again, this an attribute to the lack of training.

rsp wrote on November 26, 2012 at 9:11 pm

You don't know that 8 shots were fired and 18 years of age is an adult. An accident is when you aim at the pit and accidently kill the lab. Considering you don't have any facts or information about what happened how can you state that it's a lack of training?

speedg35 wrote on November 27, 2012 at 7:11 am

Does indiscriminately firing your weapon "multiple" (or 8 times as the witness described) times with a young girl present in a park sound like suitable training?  Would you do that if 2 people were fighting?  How many times do you need to fire from a few feet away?  What other facts am I missing?  Oh yeah, this girl's pet was killed instead of the attacking dog!  Training??

ilpatriot wrote on November 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Re: ksansone63. " What goes up, must come down". OMG, it's raining bullets.

rsp wrote on November 20, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Yeah, I was taught to never shoot in the air. 

commonfolk wrote on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 am

I agree. firing shots into the air would have been dumb. Maybe that is why so many shots were fired. Possibly he shot near them towards the ground. Let's hope he gave warning shots.

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 am

 " Police Chief Anthony Cobb said members of his department are working to find out the same thing."

Transparency, transparency, transparency...read the articles.  This Chief has said this word over and over again.  Yet, here we are with another shooting without the results of his report that was promised.  The last shooting, he stated when the internal and shooting review was finshed it would be out... yet no report.  Now, we have this incident that occurred four days ago and the Chief says his Department is working to find out the "same thing".  

The facts are this:  The officer and supervisors filed a report before the end of their shift that night.  This report would indicate how many shots were fired and what his/her intentions and justification was to use this level of force.  REMEMBER, COB STATED PREVIOUSLY ALL USE OF FORCE REPORTS WILL BE REVIEWED PERSONALLY BY HIM.  So we should all know that he knows, who fired, how many shots, and the officer's reasons.  Yet he will not release any of this?  I get that they might be reviewing it with their managment team to best determine the outcome, good shoot or bad shoot, but the other information has been available for days.  

Funny, when an officer shoots a citizen, the officer's name is immediately put out. (See shooting on Crispus Drive), and where was the promised public review of that case. When an officer shoots a dog, his identify is not?  

Maybe Steve Carter can answer these questions, or the good Mayor, since they were always so quick to provide information in the past.  I'm not saying this isn't a justified shooting, it might be.  I'm saying the Chief has the reports on his desk hoping you will go away, and he won't have to answer.  

 

rsp wrote on November 21, 2012 at 1:11 am

At the time of your comment it had been 3 days. There is on outside review in all officer involved shootings. The release of the officers' names in the shooting on Crispus was unusual, especially so quickly. If you want to see the reports from that shooting, the reviews? Go ask for them. They are available to the public.

alabaster jones 71 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 3:11 am
Profile Picture

I was willing to give this officer the benefit of the doubt when I read the original article regarding this incident...but eight shots fired?  Is his aim that bad?

Perhaps the first few shots were deliberately fired into the ground right next to the dogs in an attempt to scare them enough to separate from one another.  Even that would have been risky though, since in that case both dogs might have just disengaged from the fight, ran away, and possibly endangered other people or animals while the adrenaline from their fight continued to pump through their veins.

Still not sure what to think about this.  The officer was likely never trained for this situation and didn't know what he was supposed to do.  I see a lot of people trashing the officer, but I haven't seen very many reasonable suggestions as to what he should have done instead.  A lot of the "suggestions" (he should have kicked them, hit them with his baton, pepper sprayed them, etc.) are comical.  I have witnessed fights involving vicious dogs, and often an aggressive, vicious dog will not disengage from the fight no matter what you do to him, not until either he or the other dog is dead.

What the officer probably should have done was called animal control and waited, and in the meantime do whatever he reasonably could to try and break up the fight.  Even if it took animal control half an hour to arrive, that still sounds more responsible to me than discharging his firearm eight times in a park in a residential area.

Sid Saltfork wrote on November 21, 2012 at 8:11 am

alabaster;  I agree with you.  However, the good citizens would have condemned the officer for waiting until animal control showed up.  The officer would have been damned either way. Now, he will be known for the rest of his life as "Dog Killer".  

speedg35 wrote on November 26, 2012 at 7:11 pm

Why aren't police officers carrying the same nooses that animal control has in their squad cars?

pattys 03 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 4:11 am

I am wondering why Animal Control doesn't publish a picture of the Pit.  Maybe someone would recognize the dog and turn in the owners.  Then the owners could be held responsible.

Local Yocal wrote on November 21, 2012 at 5:11 am
Profile Picture

“He got 5 to 6 feet away from the dogs and just started shooting at them,”

CPD policy is pretty clear when lethal force is allowed. No where does it say, "When two dogs are fighting, blast away." The owner of the Lab was not in danger from the pit bull, since she was able to hold onto the leash without the pit bull attacking her. Her dog was the subject of the attack. Neighbors had seen the pit bull before and no humans reported being attacked by the dog before. The unnamed officer (explain why taxpayers should accept having annonymous soldiers serve them on their payroll?) will have quite a creative writing chore ahead as he attempts to 'splain why he went for his pistol first in a residential area over some dogs. This would be stupid funny if it hadn't cost a family their pet. Kathy Saathoff and Kelsey need to file a formal complaint within 30 days at the City Building.

This is yet another reason to have a Citizens Review Board oversee the CPD. Too many police officers are too quick to reach for their gun first, or use extreme force when it is completely unnecessary. One thing is for sure, any civil settlement with the Saathoff's should not exceed $40,000; or the message is clear in light of the recent Gary McFarland and Brandon Ward settlements: dogs are more valuable than black men.

And so...another lesson learned for readers when Mary Schenk writes a news story: the first version is always the "no big deal" version the police want publicized. Schenk will go no further than what police and prosecutors give her, which is why she has the access to their quotes week after week. Schenk should be deputized as part of law enforcement. (Notice in the above case, she does not quote the CPD Use of Force Policy.)

welive wrote on November 21, 2012 at 8:11 am

Speaking as someone who had their dog shot by the champaign police dept in there own home.You will never get a true reason why they felt the need to shot them besides the officer felt threatend.It is sad as a pet owner who had their dog leashed be the one who gets killed not the Pit Bull.Now costing us more $ in the pound and a police investagation.

avieira wrote on November 21, 2012 at 9:11 am

From the perspective of someone who've raised , trained and worked with police dogs for over 30 years, shooting wasn't, isn't or ever will be the first measure when handling a dog fight. My guess is this was a young officer who probably wasn't trained enough with dog handling. Strong water hose is your first. If that cannot be done (as in this case), pepper spray does it. The obvious thing would have been, upon 911 call, for the dispatcher to get Animal Control officers there. And, please, stop the "for Pete's sakes, it 's just a dog"-litany. What happened was wrong. Period. The result of irresponsible dog ownership ( from the Pit's owner, whose lack of proper dog ownership, will cause the Pit's euthanasia) and lack of judgement/proper training from the CPD Officer. Pure and simple.

alabaster jones 71 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 am
Profile Picture

Before we get too carried away bashing the officer, we should remember to blame the person most responsible for the whole incident.  The best thing that can happen at this point is to find the jackass who let his vicious dog run loose, and to give him the severest legal penalties allowed for his stupidity.

Learning2B wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Amen to that.

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 am

@rsp. No, there is not an outside review on this type of shooting.  It seems your "inside" information is incorrect.  The Crispus was the norm, not the exception.  Check your details, or just say you speak for the Department, because your level of "inside" information and your defense of this administration would speak otherwise.  Cobb has the reports, he know how many shots were fired, who shot them and why they shot when they did.  Again, I understand it will take time to compare the actions with the policy, however, the current question is how many shots, which dogs were hit and who was the officer.  If an outside agency is investigating, why isn't the Chief saying that?  Did he tell you something different?

rsp wrote on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 am

It is common knowledge that when an officer is involved in a shooting there is an outside investigation. It involves the state police and other agencies. They don't distingush between types of shootings. There are always multiple reviews against different standards that have to take place. To think they could all be finished in 4 days is absurd. By the way, both dogs were shot. 

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 11:11 am

You also keep saying both dogs were shot.  Nothing in the media reports this fact.  Either you are law enforcement or privy to the information the rest of us cannot get.  If you are not law enforcement and they told you, why can't they tell the rest of us? Hmmm.

rsp wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

You really need to get over your paranoia. On the city's website you can subscribe to get updates just like I did. You'll get the same press releases the media does. 

 

http://ci.champaign.il.us)">City of Champaign - All 
 

Officers Respond to Animal Call: Dog Fatally Wounded

Posted: 19 Nov 2012 06:13 AM PST

On November 17, 2012, at approximately 5:23 PM, Champaign Police Officers were dispatched to the area of John Street and Crescent Drive for a report of a Pitbull that was attacking another dog.

A female was walking her dog on a leash in the area of John and Crescent when the Pit Bull ran up and attacked her dog.

Attempts were made to separate the dogs by the female and another witness which included several kicks to the aggressive Pitbull. The attempts to separate the two dogs were unsuccessful.

Officers arrived on scene and observed the two dogs that were still fighting. The woman no longer had control of her dog and the leash was intertwined between the two dogs.

One of the Officers at the scene drew his duty weapon and fired multiple rounds at the Pitbull. Once the dogs were separated, it was determined that both dogs had sustained injuries from a gunshot wound. The female’s dog sustained a fatal wound and died at the scene. Animal Control was called to the scene and secured the Pitbull.

The Champaign Police Department is currently investigating this incident and will provide additional information, as it comes available. The Champaign Police Department encourages dog owners to be responsible for their pets and keep them on a leash at all times when they are in public.

  You are subscribed to email updates from City of Champaign

 

curiousJ wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

@rsp: Please provide more recent reports which cite that the attacking dog sustained a gunshot wound, because I'm not able to do so. That little tidbit seems to have gone poof.

I've heard from what I consider a reliable source that the attacking dog has a grazing gunshot wound to a single leg if it has a gunshot wound at all, while Dog took a bullet to the throat with a U of I necropsy to provide definitive cause of death.

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 11:11 am

@rsp. That may very well be when a person is shot, but not when a dog or other weapons discharge occurs.  But hey, when it comes out that the Serious Use of Force Team or ISP did in fact investigate this incident, I be the first to tell you I was wrong. I'm sure likewise.  I assume you are saying that he doesn't know the identity of the officer nor has he seen the reports?  If that is the case, that doesn't adhere to his own policy (found on their website).

rsp wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

He knows who it was, but they have to go through their procedures. Even if they don't have to have as extensive of an investigation they still investigate. That doesn't equate to covering it up because the public isn't in the middle of it. 

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

I'm not suggesting that are covering it up, you should read my comments, you offered that strangley enough and seem to be a little defensive, maybe you are too close to this issue and need to step back. Can you direct me to your information regarding the conclusion of the other shooting investigated by the Department from Sept. 9th where Cobb states: 

 

"We are pleased with the pace of this investigation and the timely release of information. However, there are still internal reviews to be conducted," Police Chief Anthony Cobb said in a written release.

"It is the chief of police who will make a final recommendation, and at that time, his report and recommendations will be available to the public," Dunn said in the written release."

More than two and half months later and no available report. Yet, the release indicates that the State Police and SA Office has released their findings. 

Maybe they are overwhelmed by the various investigations and it takes this long, maybe not. However, as I asked in the previous comment, why not confirm the officers name, number of shots, etc.  This is information readily avaibable and will not affect or change the internal investigation.  Again I ask you what information that you have that indicates they are waiting for outside sources to investigate?  You seem to want others to just take your word that everything is going as it should be, and it may in fact be just that, but don't you think the public has a right to know?  

 

constantly amazed wrote on November 21, 2012 at 11:11 am

http://ci.champaign.il.us/cms/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/Champaign-Polic...

1.5.1 FIREARMS DISCHARGE INVESTIGATION
AND REVIEW PROCEDURES

A. The following procedures will regulate the reporting,
investigation, and disposition of every incident
involving a firearm discharge by an officer with the
following exceptions:
1. During firearms training, unless property
damage or personal injury results.
2. To obtain a fired bullet cartridge for firearm
identification.
3. To euthanize an animal as described in Policy
1.3
when approved by a supervisor and when
the Professional Standards investigation reveals
no inconsistencies with Department policy.
These procedures apply for all firearm
discharges including those caused by deliberate
acts, negligent acts, or erroneous acts.

1.3.2 USE OF DEADLY FORCE

C. Deadly force may be used to kill a dangerous animal
or an animal that is so severely injured that humanity
requires its disposal to prevent further suffering.

POLICY NUMBER: 1.6

MULTI-JURISDICTIONAL INVESTIGATIVE TEAM

DEFINITIONS:
Serious Use of Force Incident: Those incidents where an
individual or individuals receive serious injuries from law
enforcement officers, either on- or off-duty.

1.6.1 PROCEDURES
A. The Chief executive officer of an agency, or an
assigned designee, when notified that an officer has
been involved in a serious use of force situation, may
choose to request additional assistance from
agencies participating in this agreement. Those
agencies are: the Champaign Police Department, the
Rantoul Police Department, the University of Illinois
Police Department, the Urbana Police Department,
the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office, and the
Illinois State Police. The Parkland College Police
Department and the Mahomet Police Department are
also parties to this agreement but do not contribute
investigative staff.

 

curiousJ wrote on November 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

So nice of you to post the SOP that will be used to attempt to sweep this under the rug ... either by claiming that Dog was viciously aggressive or fatally wounded. Neither of which, from my understanding, is even close to True.

BatmanIllini wrote on November 21, 2012 at 1:11 pm

I'm sorry, did you just say that a dog attacking another dog is not viciously aggressive? 

curiousJ wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Dog was the attacked not the attacker. The attacking dog is still alive and in custody.

Local Yocal wrote on November 21, 2012 at 9:11 pm
Profile Picture

"Dangerous animal" = dog attacking another dog?

billbtri5 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 1:11 pm

not too long ago CPD sent out the SWAT Team to take on 6 dogs on a drug raid, I think they may have been armed though no guns were reported..

 

choco640 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Personally, I don't think a 911 call is warranted for two dogs fighting.  If the bit pull was attacking the young lady that would be another matter.  Where was her mace?  If she is out walking her dog by herself she should always carry some.  I am very sorry that the family lost their dog, but things happen.  The police were called and if they felt the best way to break up the fight was with a bullet, so be it.  The were called to the situation, they didn't just drive up and start shooting.  Things happen in life...deal with it!

mattd149 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

There is a Fire Station less than a block from where this happened.  A blast from an APW would have surely broke the dogs apart.

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

CPD reports this information on their records site:

 

C12-11545 DOGS RUNNING AT LARGE CPD 7-11 LOCATION: 700 BLOCK OF CRESCENT DRIVE OCCURRED:11/17/2012 17:22 REPORTED: 11/17/2012 17:23 OFFICER: DAVIS,ANDRE

SUMMARY: OFFICERS DISPATCHED TO A VICIOUS PIT BULL RUNNING AT LARGE PIT BULL ATTACKED ANOTHER DOG BEING WALKED ON A LEASH BOTH DOGS WERE SHOT IN AN EFFORT TO STOP THE ATTACK

 

 

Nickemry wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Wow choco that was extremely insensitive.  While I do agree that anyone out walking alone or with a dog should carry protection such as mace what would you have done?  Just stood their watching your dog get mauled to death and then when it was over go home?  Of course you call 911 who you hope would then contact animal control to assist the police officers in humanely subduing the dogs. 

ksansone63 wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

OMG, I don't shoot guns, for heavens sake, and obviously it wouldn't have been any better to shoot in the air, I was trying to think of something that would've pacified the Officers need to shoot and not get anyone hurt.  That obviously wouldn't have worked.  My bad. The fact remains the "good" dog is dead, and the "bad" dog will never be claimed and will die due to that fact and the ignorant Officer will probably get away with murder of an innocent animal.

Justsayit wrote on November 21, 2012 at 2:11 pm

I don't think this is an "ignorant officer" and I believe that he/she did what they could to stop one dog from killing another, with the best of intentions.  I do believe the Department could have been more open regarding what they are investigating.  I would like to know if their were actually "eight shots fired" and that was/could be easily established at the scene and the Chief has that answer.  If the officer fired two shots and one struck the Lab, or as some have said one shot that was through and through and struck the Lab, then I support the officers use of force.  But "eight shots"  was simply unloading on a mass of fur with predictable results.  Despite not knowing otherwise, I want to think that is not the case.  Yet we have the family's story immediately, and the Department should be addressing the errors with some factual information that would not affect the subsequent internal policy review.  

billbtri5 wrote on November 26, 2012 at 8:11 am

good luck on the wait...I'm still waiting for an answer as to why no police report was made on an attempted child abduction in Champaign last summer..as was reported in this paper..

ddude wrote on November 26, 2012 at 10:11 am

Champaign police procedure: shoot first, ask questions never, or later if absolutey necessary, and/or if there is a huge public outcry. then deny any wrongdoing.

ddude wrote on November 26, 2012 at 11:11 am

I'm going to go walk  my dog. let's see... leash, poop bag,treats, pistol, mace, bullet proof vest....there, I think I'm ready, gotta love champaign

Bulldogmojo wrote on November 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm

The police should have handled this like they have done to humans in the past. Take them to Champaign county jail, strap them to a restraint chair and then taser them.

http://cucpj.org/policemisconduct

itazurakko wrote on November 26, 2012 at 6:11 pm

I think he means that IF the officer had just stood back and done nothing at all, it's possible that Dog would have been killed by the other dog in any case.  We can never know. 

However we DO know that because the officer did in fact shoot (even if he was aiming at the other dog) Dog is definitely dead now, from that shot.  So the situation didn't end up improved any. 

Electra1 wrote on March 09, 2013 at 10:03 pm

He fired EIGHT shots, not one.  He was undoubtedly aiming to kill BOTH dogs.

SaintClarence27 wrote on March 10, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Have you ever seen a dog fight? It's not exactly slow moving, and the officer may have been trying to kill only the aggressive dog. I don't think that's "undoubtable" at all.