Patrol car recording: ‘Why did you shoot my dog?’

Patrol car recording: ‘Why did you shoot my dog?’

I’m taking the side of Officer Thomas Griffin here, and quite frankly, I don’t give a DAMN what the dog lovers and Police haters have to say about it. Officer Griffin was in a situation where a domestic disturbance had been reported, THE most dangerous situation an Officer can enter, one filled with unknowns.

There is NO video of the dog approaching Officer Griffin, but I have to assume that this officer is well trained and at least somewhat experienced, otherwise, he would NOT have been riding a one man unit on the streets of Austin Texas answering calls.

The officer perceived the dog to be an immediate threat to his personal safety, and he DID shoot the dog, of that there is NO question. What was he supposed to do? Carry a few *Scooby Snacks* so he could pacify a dog while dealing with subjects on 2 legs?

Watch the video, read the story and please focus on the last paragraph from the American-Statesman concerning the Austin Police Departments policy regarding the use of deadly force against an animal when an Officer feels threatened.

Audio from a 911 call and a patrol car video released Tuesday sheds light on the fatal shooting of a dog by a police officer in East Austin.

Michael Paxton’s blue heeler, Cisco, was shot Saturday afternoon by officer Thomas Griffin, who was responding to a call about a domestic disturbance. After Paxton created the Facebook page Justice for Cisco, the story went viral, and the page had more than 52,000 “likes” Tuesday evening.

Paxton, 40, said Tuesday that he might file a formal complaint against Griffin with the Office of the Police Monitor and might explore his legal options.

Cisco “did not deserve what he got, and I did not deserve to have a gun in my face,” Paxton said.

When Paxton went on KLBJ-FM’s “Dudley & Bob Morning Show” on Tuesday to discuss the incident, Police Chief Art Acevedo called in to apologize. He said an investigation is under way, which is standard when officers discharge a weapon.

The 911 call features a woman who said she was driving past a home in the 2600 block of East Fifth Street and saw a man who appeared to be drunk and a woman trying to get away from him. The video shows Griffin arriving about 4:45 p.m., and he can be heard trying to verify which home was referenced. Not long after leaving his patrol car, Griffin is heard shouting, “Show me your hands” and then, “Get your dog!” That was followed by Cisco’s bark and a single gunshot.

Paxton begins yelling at Griffin, saying, “Why did you shoot my dog?”

“Why didn’t you get your dog when I told you to get your dog?” Griffin replied.

“I didn’t know; I just came around the corner, you pulled a gun out and told me to put my hands up,” Paxton is heard saying. “I didn’t know anybody was here.”

Paxton is heard saying the dog would not have bit Griffin, but Griffin replied that there was no way he could have known that. Griffin said he approached with his gun drawn because he was responding to a disturbance. Griffin can later be heard on the audio telling his supervisor that the dog jumped at him, which Paxton denies.

Austin police policy states that an officer is authorized to use deadly force against an animal “which reasonably appears … to pose an imminent threat to the safety of officers or others.” (bold emphasis mine- Fred)

Story Here:
Patrol car recording: ‘Why did you shoot my dog?’

I can’t speak for others and their actions or reactions, but as for me, taking the life of a dog as opposed to risking the possibility of injury to an Officer leaves me with only one thing left to say.

Doggone. :twisted:

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10 Responses to Patrol car recording: ‘Why did you shoot my dog?’

  1. Unfortunately events like this do happen. Officers arriving at a scene have other concerns to worry about, like “STAYING ALIVE”.

    When an encounter between DOG and OFFICER happen, and the dog advances in a way the that an Officer feels threatened, the Officer has the right to dispatch the dog to DOGGIE HEAVEN.

    As a former Officer, and Chief, I have had to deal with such events. An officer is not expected to get bitten by any animal, so if he feels that he is in danger of serious bodily injury, the officer is within his right to shoot the animal, that’s the bottom line. As long as the officer follows the policy and procedure he is justified, and that’s the bottom line.

    If you have a dog that might bite someone it’s your responsibility to control the animal, not the officer. From what I see, he was justified in using deadly force against the dog.

    It is what it is … keep control of your dog!

    • TexasFred says:

      Well, Officer Griffin DID do a good job of controlling the dog…

      40 pound dog, .40 bullet, seems a fair swap.. :twisted:

      I too have shot dogs that I felt threatened me, and I am a dog lover, but the dog is an ANIMAL…

      I think bears are cute too, but I’ll damn sure shoot one if I feel threatened…

  2. NativeSon says:

    TF, where’s the link to AAS article? I’m not seeing the “last paragraph”…but I can guess it’s appropriate (FOR KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD) tree-hugging liberal, anti-cop blather!!!

    • TexasFred says:

      Sorry, it appears that there was a glitch with the link, and thank you for the *catch*, I guess the format cut it off and I didn’t notice…

      The last paragraph from AAS is about the APD policy regarding shooting an animal that an Officer perceives as a threat! It was a decent post from AAS, but you would not believe the morons that are sending me NASTY emails and Facebook messages…

      Apparently they think personal insults will have an affect on me and change my attitude about shooting a dog that I believe to be a threat to my safety…

      They don’t KNOW me do they?? :twisted:

  3. Katie says:

    At least he should be grateful that the office didn’t eat his dog the way our beloved President did to other dogs.

    Somebody save BO. The POTUS looks starved and the poor dog could become dinner.

  4. mrchuck says:

    From what I heard … not seen … the Austin PD Officer was responding correctly, even asking and getting further clarifications as to address, etc.

    Drawing his weapon before entering said private property is always ascertained by the investigating police officer who senses the need to protect himself.

    This is academy training at it’s best.

    When a dog came charging at him from around the back corner of the house, with only a second to sight and fire, the officer’s accurate pistol fire was “dead” on.

    Case closed. Proper tactical procedure followed 100%.

    Next…

  5. BobF says:

    I believe there’s no cop in America that wants to shoot a dog or a person unless they truly believe their safety is in jeopardy. That officer did what he believed needed to be done and I bet he feels bad about having to do it. I’m sick of people who say cops wanted to shoot someone or something.

    • TexasFred says:

      Sadly Bob, there ARE people in Law Enforcement that actually DO want to shoot someone or some thing, just to kill it… They somehow get past psych evals and oral boards, but they usually don’t last too long once they hit the streets.. Usually…

  6. Robert says:

    You know Americans are a funny bunch. We watch football and criticize the QB for throwing a bad pass, We criticize the baseball player who strikes out. We criticize a cop for making a split second decision that if made wrong COULD KILL him.

    I generally take the side of the officer in these situations. If it were my dog I’d be a bit pissed off too though. HOWEVER; My dog wouldn’t be threatening the officer unless they were on my property uninvited. If I call the cops, it’s up to me to secure the dog. Its MY responsibility as a dog owner to secure my dog unless I want him/her to attack.

    Seems like the officer had a choice to make in this instance. He made it. Dead dog. I’m betting that the cop has a dog at home too. Probably would have felt better about killing the man rather than the dog. I know I would have, but I’m a neanderthal.

  7. “HOWEVER; My dog wouldn’t be threatening the officer unless they were on my property uninvited. If I call the cops, it’s up to me to secure the dog. Its MY responsibility as a dog owner to secure my dog unless I want him/her to attack. ”

    EXACTLY. Personal responsibility. Smooth move, homeowner. YOU killed your dog.

    BZ

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