Owner upset after officers shoot dog
August 16, 2006
Shun Carter, owner of slain pit bull puppy Dino, reacts after officers were forced to shoot the dog during a dog fight in Cedar Grove today. (Greg Pearson/The Times)
By John Andrew Prime
The owner of a pit bull shot by police officers in Shreveport's Cedar Grove neighborhood Tuesday says he thinks officers overreacted and plans to file a complaint.
Shun Carter, 19, of the 600 block of West 72nd Street, said he had just let his 11-month-old American pit bull, Dino, out to "attend to nature" when it got into a fight with another neighborhood dog.
Concerned neighbors called police about 9 a.m. to report the dogfight and when officers arrived, Dino charged an officer, who shot at it twice.
A least one round struck the dog but it got back up and charged another officer, said Shreveport police Sgt. Johnny Cook.
"The dog got back up, made circles and charged the other officer. The second officer shot at the dog four or five times. The dog dragged itself behind the house," Cook said.
Shreveport police spokeswoman Kacee Hargrave said the dog was struck in a leg and his hind area and was taken by Caddo Parish Animal Control.
Cook estimated the dog weighed about 130 pounds
. The dog had been tied up but broke loose to charge officers, Cook said.
Cook said officers Maced the animals first to break up the dogfight. Carter, who also was attempting to break up the fight, caught some of the Mace, although not directly, Cook said.
Cook said the first officer to fire shots was a veteran officer with at least eight years on the force. The second officer was a new officer on the force. Neither officer's name has been released, and the incident will be investigated, Cook said. Both officers also will have to undergo routine drug screening.
Hargrave said neither officer was injured and no arrests were made.
Carter, who had to be briefly restrained by officers during the incident, stood later in the street, his white T-shirt covered with his dog's blood, and fumed at what had happened.
"My dog wasn't going after any officers," Carter said. "He was just running around in his yard. All they had to do was let me go and grab my dog and put it in the house. He shot my dog, I guess, because it's a pit bull."
Cook, like most officers, was subdued after an incident in which a pet dog is shot.
"They're always going to be mad because we have to shoot the dog," he said.
The last reported incident in which Shreveport police had to shoot a dog was less than a month ago. On July 26, officers shot two pit bulls during a search in Queensborough for a man sought on an armed robbery warrant. That occurred in the 3100 block of Catherine Street when someone released one of the dogs after the suspect ran into a residence. That dog bit a female officer and was shot.
The second dog was shot a little later when officers tried to round up numerous other canines at the house and the second dog tried to attack an animal control officer. The man who allegedly released the first dog on the officer was arrested.