UPDATED: Police Officer Reportedly Calls Dog to Him Then Shoots Dog to Death

Max, as shown on the WFAA website.

Max, as shown on the WFAA website.

In August, police in Cleburne, TX responded to a call about 3 loose dogs who had escaped their fenced yard.  One dog was reportedly captured without incident before police arrived.  The other two were located by a police officer, whose identity is being kept hidden by the department, who reported that the 7 month old puppy behaved in a threatening manner toward him, including growling, and that he had to shoot the puppy to death.

The puppy’s owner received the news and could not believe it.  Her puppy, called Max, had never acted in an aggressive manner and the story didn’t make sense to her.  So she FOIA’d the officer’s body cam footage of the shooting.  That footage (which I have not watched) reportedly shows the officer coaxing the two loose dogs to him, the dogs behaving in a friendly manner and the officer killing the puppy.

The Cleburne police department is investigating itself in the matter and hiding as many details as possible:

Cleburne police are now investigating, but say the short video clip of the dog being shot doesn’t tell the whole story.

[…]

A statement [police spokeswoman Kelly] Summey provided said the dog was indeed being aggressive before he was shot.

[…]

Summey wouldn’t tell News 8 if the officer in question is on leave during the investigation, or how long the investigation will take.

Summey also didn’t know how many dogs have been fatally shot by police in Cleburne in recent years.

You are not seeing what you are seeing.  We won’t tell you anything.  We know nothing.  Seems legit.

If anyone here has a stronger stomach than I have, please share your impressions of what’s shown in the video.  Do you hear any growling?  Do you see any body language from the dogs that would reasonably be interpreted as threatening?  Does it appear that the officer would reasonably be in fear of his safety based on the actions of the dogs?

(Thanks Clarice for the links.)

***

UPDATE, added October 21, 2014 – The Fox affiliate in Dallas-Fort Worth reports:

A city spokesperson said Monday that the Texas Rangers are being asked to conduct an investigation into the shooting, adding that the city will also be asking another outside agency to conduct a review.

[…]

In a police report regarding the incident, the officer involved said, “I raised my duty weapon to the ready position – pointed at the growling dog’s head. As soon as I lifted my pistol, the dog began coming up the hill, continuing to growl and display its teeth…I fired three shots at it.”

(Thanks Arlene for the link.)

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23 Comments

  1. db

     /  October 20, 2014

    Don’t have the stomach to watch it, either, but it certainly suggests we have another power-hungry, shoot first, CYA cop here . . . supported by folks who probably would have/have done the same thing. Probably the ACO who rides around in the back of the truck would be happy here, too! I hope the owner finds some legal counsel who can pursue charges.

    Reply
  2. One of the dogs sounded was doing an “excited dog whine-bark” to my ear. I heard no growling, even with the bass turned up to make sure I wasn’t missing it. Not even a true bark that could have been mistaken for an aggressive bark.

    Furthermore, the officer had his gun IN HAND as he approached and called to them. That was not a “draw in response to an aggressive dog charging” or any other such, he had the gun in hand and ready to fire as he called to them. Nor does the dog appear to approach the officer, all the movement was the officer’s, approaching the dog. He chirped at them, they looked up and gave him their attention, and he shot the one three times. I understand the three shots, once you determine threat you fire to put it DOWN. But based on this clip there was no reason to fire in the first place.

    The video itself is short, only 22seconds. So I certainly can’t swear that the dogs weren’t acting aggressively BEFORE that snippet. However the video starts with the officer approaching the dogs, who are sniffing a drain, not with the dogs in proximity to the officer or otherwise acting in a remotely aggressive manor.

    Reply
    • I’ll add, the dogs were both wagging tails, which by itself doesn’t mean “friendly” but both tails were doing a fairly slow-laid back type wag. These were not overly excited dogs, or overly worked up dogs, or dogs who thought they saw prey. Otherwise its hard to see the dog body language in the video.

      Reply
      • Thanks for your report. I just can’t watch any vids described as “calls dog to him, hurts dog” which tragically, this isn’t the first I’ve come across.
        I would THINK that if the police department had footage which showed the dogs being aggressive, they would have released it. They released this brief clip in response to the owner’s request. I can’t imagine any reason they would withhold relevant footage that backed their version of events.
        If anyone else has any impressions from watching the clip, please share.

      • I’ve seen worse :/

        That would be my assumption too, that if they had video showing growling/aggressive behavior they’d have released it.

        I understand that the original call stated that someone was trapped in their car due to “the aggressive behavior” of the dogs, so I can understand going in with the assumption of aggressive behavior, but I certainly didn’t see or hear any in the video. And I can see how a couple good sized dogs jumping on a car door trying to get the attention of someone inside the car could be perceived as “aggressive” to someone who’s scared of dogs.

      • The second video is more graphic, clear look at the dead and bloody dog.

        The other dog just wanted to check on his buddy, and that cop was clearly prepared to shoot him every time he wandered even a little bit closer. Still no aggressive behavior or sounds. Very calm and happy behavior in reaction to the ACO.

      • Watched the video of the 8minutes before the shooting: http://www.cleburnetimesreview.com/video_b174524a-5647-11e4-8c6a-cb8bcb24f91e.html

        The officer is either confused or a liar. I could clearly hear a lady say that one of the BROWN dogs tried to snap at her, but when he’s going door to door he tells one lady that THIS dog (the black and white one) was acting aggressive. Since he was basically ignoring that dog following him along I know which one I believe. Still no aggressive behavior from any dog in that video. We’re missing at least a few seconds of video though, between this one, and the 22second video where the dog is actually shot.

  3. jrossman

     /  October 20, 2014

    rat bstds that know they can get away with it………..these kind of people shouldn’t even be allowed on the police force. They shouldn’t be allowed to carry a gun. Not mentally stable, in my opinion. Most are afraid of dogs. You know, a dog might rub against them and leave dog hair on their uniform.

    Reply
    • Charlie

       /  November 13, 2014

      You speak of mental stability. Haven’t you noticed? Psychiatrists and psychologists nearly never call police “mentally ill” or allege them to have a “disorder,” because if they did, their state licensing board would suspend or pull their license.

      Reply
  4. I couldn’t see any sign of anything I’d call aggressive, the dogs were just being dogs. A McDonald’s hamburger probably would have had both dogs in the cruiser with smiles and tail wags. Instead he chose bullets.

    Reply
  5. No need to watch that again, but here is what I took from it: That officer was calmly pointing the gun and attracting the dog with a friendly clicking sound to get the dogs attention. The officer walked calmly and confidently towards the dogs. the dogs were just looking at him. Much like I would expect a dog that is friendly but does not know the person. I did not hear any growling whatsoever. In the report they say the growling occurred before that video clip (was there more?). The dog was not charging, not growling, and the officer took three shots calmly and carefully. The dogs were not moving, just looking at him, 20 feet in front. They did nothing aggressive. This was not a person that was panicking. Somewhere along he made the decision to kill that dog, and then calmly acted on that decision. He pointed the gun at the other dog but the video ends. As he did not shoot that dog, I don’t understand. they both were acting in the same way.

    Reply
  6. Arlene

     /  October 20, 2014

    There will be some accounting to be done for this gutless act! The name of the officer that shot that dog in cold blood for no reason at all is Kevin Dupre. He lured the dogs to him by making kissing sounds. The dogs were well away from him in a drainage ditch while he was at the top some distance away. He had his gun drawn and was aiming for them. The video is quite clear about that. He shot that dog purposely without any reason whatsoever.

    Now the kicker is that this all took place August 10th. You would think that if he was so innocent and was defending himself the video would have been released immediately. No, an FOIA had to be filed to get it! That says to me that they were just hoping it would all go away. The police were trying to cover up what Dupre did! Obstruction of Justine is a crime too!

    There is a petition to fire Devin Dupre here; http://www.thepetitionsite.com/472/966/353/terminate-officer-kevin-dupre-now/#sign

    There will also be an organized National Please Don’t Shoot My Dog March on Oct. 25th. For me the scary part for the city of Cleburne is that it will be an open carry march. I assume that means weapons as some people were talking about long guns. Also on that day the Cleburne police department is holding their first annual golf tournament! It will be interesting to see events unfold there!

    Reply
  7. A pure act of dog-hating cruelty.

    Reply
    • Arlene

       /  October 20, 2014

      It’s worse Lis Carey. This was a 7 month old butt wiggling puppy!

      Reply
  8. Arlene

     /  October 20, 2014

    Good thing the ACO showed up when she did. That cop was fixing to kill the second dog as he had the gun pointed and ready to fire. See how the dog just follows the ACO with no catch pole, no leash, no nothing! She even bent down and rubbed the dogs tummy as he was laying there upside down. See the video here. http://www.cleburnetimesreview.com/video_cee9af92-5646-11e4-8ae5-0b544247bb8a.html

    Reply
    • Thank goodness for that ACO – he clearly would have shot the other dog just for approaching him in a friendly manner. He was ready to kill the second dog as soon as it came within a certain distance, no matter what the dog’s behavior was.

      What does it say about a man who will kill a dog just because he’s close enough to do so?

      Reply
      • db

         /  October 21, 2014

        I think it says a lot about what kind of “human” being the cop is. He ought to be tried and found guilty of animal abuse, but I think we all know what will happen. I know there are some really good LEOs out there, but there are too many who feel like they are big and tough because they have guns and can kill innocent animals.

  9. Kittypurr

     /  October 27, 2014

    Dear Cleburne police officer- I am inviting you to Thanksgiving dinner and when I pass the mashed potatoes I will consider your reaching for the bowl Agressive and put three bullets in your brain. I know you won’t mind and your superiors will understand as this is SOP. Thank you.

    Reply
  10. Charlie

     /  November 13, 2014

    It does not break any laws to stand in front of a mirror, speak the name of this vicious bastard, and ask God to give him according to his deeds, and according to his attitude towards the public. That extends to everyone who would shield him. The mayor of that hick town? His name is a hoot! “CAIN.” Don’t anyone forget about Brett Olsen, the vicious policeman in Salt Lake City who blazed down the dog Geist, after the cop invaded the owners backyard. This other blood lusting “peace” officer is paid almost $92,000 a year!

    Reply
  11. Clarice

     /  November 13, 2014

    It is disappointing that the Texas Rangers will not investigate this case.

    “We have gone to the Texas Rangers,” said Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain. “They have looked at it. They have not told us why, but they’ve turned down the case, which to me indicates they didn’t see anything of a criminal nature.”

    http://www.wfaa.com/story/news/local/2014/11/13/rangers-wont-investigate-dog-case/18988207/

    Reply
    • Charlie

       /  November 13, 2014

      They don’t want to be bothered over what happened to a dog. As long as they can wear cowboy hats and watch Chuck Norris re-runs of “Walker, Texas Ranger” they have done half of whatever they do. This matter of police causing very bad relations with the public is building to a crisis. It shouldn’t take another 1000 situations like this to make the public storm their state legislators with complaints and warnings about votes withheld from them next time around.

      Reply
  12. H Hollon

     /  November 25, 2014

    Does Officer Dupre think that he lives in the wicked wild wild west where it is ok to shot to kill anyone and anything and no one takes offense to it????WELL, GUESS AGAIN OFC DUPRE, AND ANY OTHER OFFICER WHO HAS SHOT AND KILLED SOMEONES BELOVED PET IT IS NOT OK AND IT MUST STOP! I KNOW THAT BEING A COP IS A VERY DANGEROUS JOB BUT THAT DOES NOT DIMINISH THE FACT THAT SOMETHING IS WRONG WHERE COPS ARE KILLING PETS RIGHT AND LEFT AND THE EVIDENCE SHOWS A DIFFERENT STORY ABOUT WHAT REALLY HAPPENED. THERE MUST BE ADDITIONAL TRAINING ON HOW TO DEAL WITH ANIMALS …..LIKE HOW TO USE A PHONE AND CALL ANIMAL CONTROL, USE A CATCH POLE, USE A TAZER AND ONLY AND THAT MEANS ONLY IF AN EXTREME THREAT OCCURS SHOULD THEY USE A GUN (AND KILL A PUPPY ESPECIALLY SINCE THE VIDEO SHOWS THAT HE WAS NOT AND I REPEAT NOT AGGRESSIVE AND THE COP CALLED TO HIM TRYING TO GET HIM CLOSER TO KILL HIM (GUN DRAWN FROM THE BEGINNING) THE PUPPY WAS FRIENDLY AND HE PROCEEDED TO MURDER HIM. IF THIS WERE MY DOG I WOULD GET A TOP NOTCH ATTORNEY AND THE COP WOULD BE FIRED (AS HE LIED AND MURDERED A SILLY PUPPY) THIS DID NOT HAVE TO HAPPEN AND IT SHOULD NEVER HAVE HAPPENED.

    Reply

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