It is no longer surprising when reports of a police officer shooting a dog make the news. While no one tracks how many dogs are killed by cops every year, a quick internet search reveals that it happens a lot.
Some experts and activists say that every 98 minutes, a dog is shot by law enforcement.
Others call it an “epidemic” and estimate that 25 to 30 pet dogs are killed by cops EVERY DAY.
And now, unfortunately, we can add a pony to the list.
A Clackamas county family wants to know why a sheriff’s deputy shot and killed their beloved pony. They claim it happened without them knowing, and for no good reason.
Crista Fitzgerald said her family’s 30 year-old American Miniature Horse, named Gir, was fine – except for his old age. Gir was so healthy he was able to escape from his stall in a Molalla barn sometime overnight on February 18.
“I locked his stall door, and I always do a double check. The next morning I came back out before I had class in the morning, which is around 10, and he was gone,” she said.
Fitzgerald went looking for Gir, and it didn’t take long to find him:
“We started knocking door-to-door. And the first house we came to he was laying in their yard,” she explained.
She thought Gir was taking a nap, but it turns out he took a couple bullets instead.
“We walked up closer and I bent down to pet him, and that’s when I saw the pool of blood behind his cheek bones. The neighbor came out and told us she had called the sheriff’s department and they put him down,” Fitzgerald said.
When she called the officer to find out why he shot Gir, she was told that the pony had been hit by a car and had broken both of his back legs.
Clackamas County Sheriff Office spokesman Sgt. Nathan Thompson told KATU News that he believes the deputy called the Oregon Humane Society to ask about euthanizing the horse before he shot it.
But a spokeswoman for OHS said the deputy never called them.
Thompson also said the deputy called a local veterinarian to ask about euthanizing the horse:
KATU News reporter Hillary Lake contacted the vet about that call. He confirmed he did talk to the deputy, that his office offered assistance in euthanizing the horse, but that the officer said he would “take care of the problem on his own” and call a rendering service himself.
Thompson said the deputy made the decision to shoot the horse after also consulting his supervisor.
The Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office released the incident report in which the deputy explained his decision to kill Gir. In the report, the deputy wrote the following:
…The horse was very old and couldn’t stand although it tried numerous times but continued to fall over. It appeared it was nursing one front leg and a rear leg. I did not see any markings and could not develop any information as to where the horse came from or identify an owner.
I believed the horse was beyond medical help but I called the Humane Society and a local vet which they indicated it would likely need to be put down. …
Fitzgerald isn’t buying it. She said there was no sign of anything being wrong with Gir’s legs when she found him, and her vet said there was absolutely nothing wrong with the pony.
She sent Gir’s body to Oregon State University’s veterinary lab on February 25 for a second opinion.
The report says Gir died by gunshot, had no broken bones except for a fractured jaw caused by a bullet, and was in excellent body condition considering he had arthritis.
Fitzgerald’s husband filed a report, and the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office claims they are investigating the shooting.
The Oregon Humane Society is also investigating Gir’s death.
“He was part of our family… There’s no way to replace him,” Fitzgerald said, saying that her children don’t understand where Gir went, or why a police officer would hurt him.
Delivered by The Daily Sheeple
We encourage you to share and republish our reports, analyses, breaking news and videos (Click for details).
Contributed by Lily Dane of The Daily Sheeple.
Lily Dane is a staff writer for The Daily Sheeple. Her goal is to help people to “Wake the Flock Up!”