Innocent dog fatally shot by police after being restrained

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The actions of police officers in Commerce City, CO are being called into question after they responded to a call to pick up a loose dog and shot it 5 times, fatally wounding it.  The large breed dog was seen wandering around a neighbourhood, and while it was not causing any sort of disturbance a neighbour called to have it picked up, thinking it was a stray, and was astonished to see police capture and kill the dog.  This video may be disturbing to watch.

“I called police because I saw a dog wandering loose out front,” said Ken Collins.  Unbeknownst to Collins, his neighbour was looking after the dog, named Chloe, for a cousin who was out of town for the holidays.  When she went out, she left the dog in the garage with the door closed.  But somehow Chloe tripped the door opener and wandered outside.

Collins, who observed the whole scene, said he did not fear the dog, and said  that after about 30 minutes, the dog just sat inside the open garage door near her bed while officers decided what to do.  “He’s basically back in the garage or whatever, staying away from police.”   Chloe was tasered twice, and she dropped to the ground each time.  Then animal control used a catch pole to contain the dog, and it while she was on the catch pole and effectively restrained that police started shooting.

Collins, who videotaped the whole incident, was very troubled by the fact that the police started shooting and said that at least one stray bullet hit the animal control officer’s car with neighbors and kids all around.  Alicia Hall, an animal behavior technician with the Dumb Friends League said “The animal could still potentially be a danger, but if the catch pole is being used appropriately, the animal should be restrained safely. As far as I can see from the video, it looks like the dog actually walked right into the catch pole as it was coming out of the garage and was safely restrained,” Hall said.

Commerce City Police Detective Mike Saunders says the incident will be investigated and added  “We need time to look at the video. We need time to look over the officer’s report. And we need time to speak to the officer before we can comment.”  Collins later said, “I wish I hadn’t called, but like my kids keep reassuring me, I did what anybody else would do and that’s what the lady across the street said, whose dog was shot, that she would have done the same thing,”

 But nothing can bring back Chloe, who was seemingly the innocent victim in a tragic story or explain why police shot at the animal 5 times, finally killing her.



35 thoughts on “Innocent dog fatally shot by police after being restrained”

  1. This is a an and how some are very immature some are very immature and should not be caring badges to them it is a power thing the only difference between us and them(,police )they haven’t been caught yet doing something illegal ……

  2. Just from what I can see from the Video, the Animal Control officer was in control. If that was not the case why didn’t an officer step in and assist ? There was no reason for the actions that transpired . Yes the dog was agitated, normal response to catch pole restraint. Sounds like total lack of education. There are too many cases like this across the country. Seattle is one place….An innocent Lab was shot due to stupidity.

    • Greg what about the Newfie puppy shot by Des Moines, Washington police as she cowered in the shrubbery? No consequences there, either.

      I used to live in Washington state and I agree completely about the stupidity part. I worked in horse and dog rescue and am a paralegal of over thirty years experience, often using my legal training in investigations, and finding out firsthand that prosecutors just aren’t interested even in deliberate torture and murder of animals – and this goes back decades. What I experienced in Washington state in the utter lack of consequences for horrific cop behavior, and for total lack of enforcement of animal cruelty or neglect, led me to move to another state (where, unfortunately, it’s almost as bad as Washington). Seattle law enforcement and animal control agencies are notorious for their out-of-control impulse-based bloodthirsty behavior, as well as the animal control agencies’ officers actually killing their own dogs with neglect (such as leaving their own dogs locked in cars on those rare Seattle hot days).

      The kinds of people attracted to law enforcement these days, in my opinion, are not fully developed human beings – imo, they are part of the 20 percent of the population that the experts opine are either sociopathic or completely psychotic – raised on and perpetuating violence against the most vulnerable whether animal or human.

      • No offense Rox, but I think you’re wrong about the types of people attracted to law enforcement these days. Judging by my husband’s experience with applying to police departments over the past year, it’s not the applicants, it’s who the department wants to hire that is the problem. They haven’t wanted to hire an applicant that is qualified, even over-qualified for the job. They are hiring applicants right out of college and applicants that are just not mentally stable enough to do the job as can be seen by stories like this and people I’ve seen get to an academy. I’m not sure why, but that’s how it has been. One of the deciding factors for one police department was that they couldn’t hire someone that has smoked more than 10 times in the past year…true story. Nevermind my husband’s military experience, Criminal Justice degree, experience with animals including military working dogs, no criminal background, his proficiency with weapons of all types, and the fact that he would never smoke again if they asked him to. That’s how they decided on who to push through to the next step which was pathetic. Blame the departments and not the people who apply looking to do a good job, help people, and help animals.

  3. This is my point I have made for years!!! The quality of law enforcement is GONE WAY DOWN because those whom are qualified for the job, will not take it anymore and do not apply due to salaries, conditions, etc. Now the agencies across the country are having to hire the mentally unstable, the untrainable, the liabilities, the Rambos’, and the list goes on because that is all that is applying.

    ALL of these officers need immediate Administrative Leave with Pay and a FULL OUTSIDE independent agency needs to fully investigate this. If it comes back as it looks from the video, personally if it were one of my officers who work for me, (I have 2100 of them) I would FIRE them with recommendation of DECERTIFICATION, and then CHARGE them criminally with Felony Cruelty to Animal.

    To the Police Chief: Wake up, and become PROACTIVE on this before it escalates and you lose total control of this horrible situation. Professional advice.

    • Could I ask why “with pay”? Why not without pay, given the total community outrage over not only shooting a lab mix who already was on a catchpole but tasing the dog as well? This is a small part of this horrible problem obviously but given that these legalized thugs were so careless as to shoot in a tenuous situation with onlookers including children and not taking into account where the bullets might go if not INTO the dog (and apparently according to some reports some hit concrete and shattered and bounced off to other unplanned “targets”). IMO, there should be no financial support for these officers whatsoever.

      I agree with everything else you said, I am just curious why “with pay” for these monsters. If they are later found to be acting appropriately (and I don’t mean appropriately under some of the bizarre laws that have been passed granting complete immunity for all police actions even these kinds of actions against homeless, mentally ill and children) then they can be given back pay. But I don’t think they should have a paid vacation while their chief makes warm fuzzies to the community – a community like so many others becoming terrified of their local law enforcement because of the seemingly endless bloodlust exhibited by that law enforcement.

    • My husband has been trying to get a police job for just about a year now and even though he’s an Army Infantry combat veteran with two OIF tours under his belt (still with National Guard), has a Criminal Justice degree, is proficient with tons of different weapons ranging from handguns to explosives to machine guns to 120mm mortar systems, has a clean background with no criminal record, is in shape, is an extremely hard worker, and a dog lover with some MWD experience, he’s had no luck in getting into an academy thus far. And yet, some of the places he’s applied to have hired non-qualified applicants right out of college or people who are clearly not stable enough mentally in order to do the job. He got turned away from one department because he’s smoked more than 10 times in the past year and another because he was too confident in his interview. Yes, you read that right! Seriously, are you kidding me?! I mean, I know people think that I may be biased as his wife, but in all honesty he is the most level-headed and qualified person for a police position and yet that’s not who they want to hire, evidently. I don’t get it. If you have any ideas, we would be more than grateful for any help. We’re willing to move ANYWHERE. The difficult thing though about applying to states across the country is the amount of in-person testing you have to do, but if it was worth the expense we would definitely pay for the traveling. On another note, it’s so nice to see a Police Chief who is out to do a wonderful job, set a high standard for his officers, and be the example of what a police officer should be like. Kudos to you!!! You definitely give me hope that we’ll find somewhere that will truly appreciate my husband.

      • Kae, part of the problem is that few employers want to hire a combat veteran – here’s why. Yes – it is discrimination, yes, it’s unfair, and even more so because our soldiers put their lives on the line over and over and over doing what they believed was right. But while the publicity over TBI and PTSD has resulted in getting more help for combat veterans it also has made a lot of employers extremely leery about hiring them because of the publicity seemingly everywhere in the media about a veteran with PTSD or who had a traumatic brain injury that “snapped” and committed some horrific crime. Even returning soldiers who are lucky enough not to have had a TBI or experiencing PTSD are tarred with the same brush. Employers are always thinking ahead about “what if we hire the guy and then get sued because he goes off on someone.” Obviously that does not apply in police departments (because a lot of police seem to snap and without provocation go “off” on someone and a lot of times that’s a four-legged someone).

        I think you are, with all due respect Kae, completely mistaken about the police chief in this instance. If you go and read the local news media reports and witness statements and interviews you will see that even before being provided with the evidence the Police Chief was backing the officers who acted so ill advisedly and further lied to the news media about the incident. I don’t think any community is happy with a Police Chief who not only spouts off before thoroughly reviewing hard evidence but lies about it while doing so. This police chief’s actions are why a commissioner has had to step in and the community is demanding an independent investigation.

        Perhaps your husband instead of police work could instead think about getting a bit more specifically targeted education such as forensics and then try instead for a (slightly) less dangerous and more rewarding career in investigations, federal law enforcement, private investigation/security firms, and so forth.

        Please thank your husband for serving his country so well. I wish you the very best of luck and please also keep in mind that the employment crisis covers all professions, and is much worse in certain age groups such as those over 40 and especially over 50.

        • Thanks for your response Rox and yes, occasionally police departments are weary of hiring combat vets, but that’s why they conduct psychological testing, background investigations, and polygraph tests. My husband has passed all of these only to not progress for stupid reasons such as “smoking more than 10 times in the past year” and appearing too confident in his oral interview. To me, these seem like odd reasons for not hiring a qualified applicant. I suppose they would like to hire people who are not confident in their abilities and let them carry firearms. I wouldn’t doubt if the officer in this dog-shooting case was one of “those types”. My husband has not had any issues as far as his veteran status is concerned and this we know for a fact, because they will either tell you the reason you were not hired or you can request it. He is also applying to private investigation/security firms (with which he also has previous experience) and would like to, eventually, work in federal law enforcement. However, to go federal, they usually want you to have years of service in another local, but preferably state, department. As far as the danger thing goes, my husband is not a sit-behind-a-desk guy and, with him being a grunt and on the frontlines in the military when we met, him being in dangerous jobs is just what comes with the territory of being his wife. For him, a police job would be extremely rewarding and I fully support him in that.

          Thank you for your well wishes and we are aware of the employment crisis, however, police departments are constantly adding positions year-round. It can just be a pain because some application processes take quite a long time to complete…some even about a year. My husband is 30, so we do not fall in the 40-50 age group.

          And, I think you may have misunderstood my comments about a Police Chief. I was agreeing with the person I commented under who stated he was a police chief (named: Fellow Police Chief”, above) and how he said he would handle the situation if this dog-shooting business were happening in his department. If you reread what I wrote concerning a “police chief”, you will see that my comments were directed at him, personally. That’s why I state “Kudos to you”. As far as the police chief involved with this shooting goes, I’ve seen the statement made by him pretty much backing up this officer for what he did which I think is atrocious and which I definitely DO NOT agree with. I hope this city gets an investigation and justice is adequately served.

  4. The dog wasn’t any danger to people AT ALL, he was simply terrified, which any so-called “animal control officer” should have known immediately. That officer should be fired. The dog is obviously NOT attacking anyone, he is trying to get away. The slaughter of the dog was unnecessary and inhumane and if it were MY dog, I would sue them blind. How about training your officers because right now they are dumber than a box of rocks.

  5. If these officers suffer no consequences from this, it only proves how wrong and unjustified our system is. I’m so sick of seeing a new story everyday about the abuse of animals, because I know that’s only a fraction of them. And I also know 98% of these people will get away with it. even with video proving the officers overuse of power and force ending up with a dead dog who didnt do anything wrong, they still need to ‘review’ it. Seriously he shot the dog 5 times.. It is the thought that certain lives mean less than others which is destroying us, an innocent life is an innocent life weather it belongs to a person or an animal.
    I hope that sick sadistic officer rots

  6. This is absolutely getting out of control with police officers killing dogs who are no endangering their or the publics safety. They should be fired and future officers trained on proper use of guns. I can only imagine how badly the person feels who was pet sitting Chloe.

  7. This is beyond belief! Over and over again!

    Which is it, the pathetic recruits they select into the police academy or is it the lousy training they provide that now staff most city police departments with the most incompetent, brainless morons incapable of assessing that a restrained, YES RESTRAINED dog is no harm to anyone!!!!!!! Good God, they tasered the poor dog several times and that wasn’t enough to subdue it they had to shoot it! If they can’t evaluate a situation as obvious as this one, just how dangerous are they when placed in more complex situations that require a cool head.

    Are they recruiting from a mental ward? Or are they selecting the most animal hating, emotionless cowards they can find to “serve and protect?”

    And when are police departments going to “grow some testicles” and stop protecting these losers and making asses out of themselves by regurgitating the joke of internal investigations that always result in the predictable outcome justifying whatever their officers do each and every time.

    I am so protective of my dogs I don’t trust anyone or anything as there is no common sense left and people want to shoot every animal because of their own paranoia. I live on acreage and in my neighborhood we almost never call animal control or the police. We have a neighborhood web site for irrigation and often use it to notify the neighborhood when an animal goes missing or is found. We post the picture of the animal and one of us keeps the stray while we find an owner or home.

    What happened to intelligent evaluation of a situation?


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