Sacramento, CA — A Sacramento security guard got an early Christmas present from a California cop in the form of a bullet after the cop tried to kill a homeless man’s dog on the street outside a Safeway grocery store the week before Christmas.
The incident all started when a security guard at the grocery store called police over a homeless man’s refusal to leave after allegedly causing a disturbance. The officer then restrained the still unidentified homeless man who can be heard screaming in the video for an explanation as to why he was being detained.
“Why are you doing this?...I live here!,” the homeless man can be saying among other statements. He can also be heard saying he’s disabled and again begged to be let go, left alone, and that the security guard was lying about any alleged incident.
The officer who was attempting to subdue the homeless man reportedly got bit by the homeless man’s dog while the police contact occurred. To the first officer’s credit, he demonstrated restraint, even patience after being bit by the dog. He repeatedly told the homeless man he did not want to “shoot” his dog. He even asked the man to get control of the dog. How that could be possible to do is anyone’s guess as the cop seemed to be placing his whole weight on the indigent man.
Only after other officers arrived did the potentially deadly use of force escalate. Two more officers arrived in squad cars, aggressively joining the attempts by the other officer to effect an arrest. That’s when the dog’s demeanor seemed to change. A bystander, possibly the security guard who initiated the call to police, kicked the dog to shoo it away from the cops. That action seemed to anger the dog who began to bark more aggressively. That’s when one cop took two steps backward into the alley, drew his service pistol, and shot at the dog. The bullet fragmented into shrapnel and struck the homeless man in the face and the security guard in the leg.
"You shot me, you shot me in the eye, dude," say the homeless man.
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Bystanders who witnessed the incident claimed police had other options such as pepper spray, a taser, or even the need to call animal control to subdue the dog. None of those actions were taken. Unlike the first on-scene officer, the responding officer wasted no time in shooting at a dog in a crowded area, ultimately wounding two humans and reportedly striking the dog in the hind leg, a superficial wound which did not need surgery. The men, however, were taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
Recently, we at TFTP reported the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a statement declaring cops shooting dogs in the U.S. has reached epidemic proportions with cops shooting some 25-30 dogs per day with estimates that 10,000 dogs per year were being killed by cops. As TFTP has reported, many times, just as in the aforementioned case in Sacramento, people are either wounded or killed when an officer’s first shots at someone’s pet are misplaced.
According to a press release by Sacramento PD, the homeless man was not charged with any crime, the dog was taken to a veterinarian for treatment, and the security guard was struck in the leg but is expected to make a full recovery. The press release reads in part:
The officer contacted the man and attempted to negotiate with him for several minutes, encouraging him to leave the property. The male disregarded the officer’s request to leave the property and continued to argue with the officer. When the officer attempted to detain the subject, a physical altercation ensued. During that time, the man’s dog became aggressive and bit the officer on his arm. The officer requested additional units for assistance. When officers arrived, the dog charged at one of the officers. Fearing for his safety, that officer discharged his firearm at the dog. The dog fled and was later located in a nearby business establishment.
The officer-involved shooting is now under investigation by the homicide unit of the Sacramento PD and the Sacramento County district attorney will determine if any charges will be filed.