Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tuesday True Stories -- Police launch investigation into federal officer who shot animal at dog park in Severn

This is a sad story about what happens to dogs when humans, who should exercise better judgment, carry guns and use them to settle problems.  We do not live in the Wild West anymore; this person could just have easily missed and killed a child or some other dog at this public park. 

Let me know what you think about this, won't you?
This is from an article from ABC News Channel 2 out of Baltimore, Md.  Please visit that site and leave them your thoughts on the issue.


Posted: 08/04/2010
Last Updated: 7 hours and 41 minutes ago
SEVERN, Md. - Pet owners come to Quail Run Dog Park in Severn to let their dogs run free and to frolic with other canines, but when the play turned rough between Bear Bear, a Siberian Husky, and a German Shepherd, the shepherd’s owner resorted to gun fire.
"He fired... and the impact sound and everything, I asked him later cause I went closer to to Bear Bear. I asked if that was a Taser. I looked back at him, "Was that a Taser?" He said, "No. That's 9 millimeter. I hit him in the rear. I don't see any blood. I think he's going to be okay," and just calm about it," said Stephen Kurinij, who was watching the dog for his sister and brother-in-law.
Later, Bear Bear’s owners, Ryan and Rachel Reitaliata, would learn the pistol-packing owner was a Department of Defense employee out of Fort Myer in Virginia.
"Personally, I don't believe this man should carry a weapon any longer,” said Rachel, “He doesn't deserve a gun. He doesn't know how to be responsible with a fire arm."
The unidentified federal police officer also underestimated the bullet’s impact.
Doctors at an emergency animal hospital told the Husky’s owner they were helpless to save Bear Bear.
The bullet had pierced several internal organs.
"There was just no way he was going to live, so they administered the euthanizing solution and he went down easy and soft,” said Ryan Reitaliata, “Afterwards we got to spend time with him for the last five minutes."
Anne Arundel County Police dismissed the shooting until County Executive John Leopold stepped in demanding an investigation.
"I'm a dog owner. I have a black lab named 'Dora'. I would be outraged, deeply saddened, if this happened to my dog," said Leopold.
Even now, as police pledge to re-open the case, it appears their delayed reaction has complicated matters.
"At this time we are not aware of any other witnesses," said Anne Arundel County Police Chief James Teare, Sr.
But within five minutes of arriving at the dog park, we had found one.
"All I heard was like dogs going like, "Rrrrrrrrrr". When I turned around, I guess the dog owner, the cop, he didn't try to stop the dog. He just said, "Stop!" one time and then "Pow!"---shot the dog," said Steffon Nelson of Severn.
It also appears a number of children looked on as the fatal shot echoed through the park taking Bear Bear’s life.
The DOD gunman told police that the husky attacked his dog and then tried to bite him.
He claims he shot the dog fearing for his safety and that of his wife and dog.
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