Probation Officer Shoots Tiny Dog in Self Defense
In Georgia recently a law enforcement officer, performing a routine check, got into a life or death struggle. His assailant? A 12-pound Jack Russell Terrier/Chihuahua mix named Patches. After the smoke cleared, one lay mortally injured and the other is now under investigation.
The Day the lights went out in Georgia
Rolling into the Loblolly Estates Mobile Home Park, just off Mobile Avenue in Albany, GA on the morning of October 7, two Probation officers, Ronnie Simmons and Antoine Jones, came to do a field inspection. The subject of their inspection was the son of one Sherry Shelton, a resident of the manufactured home park.
When Shelton came to the door, so did her black and white mixed breed terrier. Answering to the name of Patches (due to her markings,) the small dog looked not unlike the beloved Parson Jack Russells seen in such heartwarming films as My Dog Skip and Mask. However, according to Officer Jones, Patches was not heartwarming at all. In fact, Patches was so aggressive and threatened the 6-foot, 300-pound officer so bad that, having no other option, he drew his service weapon and fired at the dog. Stricken, Patches crawled away and expired before she could be given veterinary care.
In an official statement from Georgia Department of Corrections, his department justifies Jones' act:
"On Oct. 7th, two Albany Probation Officers were conducting a field visit. During this time, an Albany Probation Officer was involved in an incident that required him to use of force against an aggressive canine during a field visit. An incident report was filed and it was determined that the Probation Officer responded appropriately."
Even so, the incident is being more closely examined by the GDC's Internal Affairs section.
Sadly, these things happen
In the interest of disclosure, I once had to put down an animal in my course of duty as a law enforcement officer. I had been called to the scene of an attack in which two extremely large (100+ pound) Rottweiler's had chased a meter reader down the street and proceeded to bite the tires of his truck. The dogs were uncontained, had no collars, no tags, and were roaming the streets in a residential area. Local residents did not have information as to who owned the dogs. Animal control was unable to capture the animals. A school bus full of elementary age kids was due in the area any minute.
After clearance from the shift sergeant to engage, I fired at the most aggressive of the rotts with my duty shotgun as it was chasing an animal control officer, putting the animal down with a load of 000 reduced recoil Remington at about twenty feet. It was adjudicated a proper use of force.
So yes, I understand what it means to have an out of control and potentially dangerous canine in the area and have to use lethal force.
Still, I am glad a Chihuahua-jack Russell mix didn't chase me.
I may not be here today.