On April 6th, my sweet rescued dog was gunned down by NYPD for no reason.
My sister and I were walking our three dogs in a public park when two of them started to scuffle with each other. We easily separated them and everyone was calmed down when an NYPD officer came onto the scene. She opened fire on Baby Girl, who wasn't even involved in the fight. Baby Girl was running away from the officer when she was hit.
NYPD killed my dog. No one was in danger until the officer started shooting. She also could have hit me or my sister, the residents who live near the park, or the kids who were playing basketball just a few feet away. My sister, a retired NYPD cop, identified herself and told the officer it was under control. I pleaded with the officer to stop shooting, but she just kept yelling at us to stay away from our own dogs.
When it was over, my sister and I weren't allowed to leave, even though we didn't know where Baby Girl was since she'd run away from the gunfire. The cops told us that they didn't know her whereabouts, but when we asked some neighborhood kids to help us find her, they found my dog lying in puddles of her own blood in a cage in the back of a police vehicle.
My brother arrived to rush her to a vet. The police offered to escort him and led him to a facility where there wasn't even a vet on duty. He had to carry Baby Girl to a different vet's office where she finally received care more than an hour after she'd been shot. She was unable to recover from her injuries and died five days later.
NYPD has not reached out to me. They've only told reporters that this is under investigation. That's not good enough. The officer who open fired in a park needs to be fired from the police force. I do not feel safe with her on the streets. In addition, NYPD needs to take immediate action to make sure this never happens again. They need to adopt a policy that says officers are not allowed to use deadly force on companion animals and they need to train their officers on how to handle dog-related incidents without putting people or pets in danger.
Police departments across the country are strengthening their policies and training to stop officers from shooting dogs and putting pet owners at risk. Colorado and Texas are even considering legislation that would require training on dog encounters for officers across the state. How many more pets need to die before NYPD starts protecting us and stops shooting our companions?
Not only was Baby Girl killed by NYPD officers, but they told her owner that they didn't know where she was, when in fact she was locked in a cage in a police vehicle. This kept Baby Girl from getting immediate veterinary attention and any chance that she might have had to live.
Police departments across the country are starting to take responsibility for these incidents. I am calling on NYPD to take immediate action by firing the officer who put people at risk and killed an innocent pet, by instituting new policies against the use of deadly force on animals and by requiring training for all officers on how to handle dog-related encounters.