Sunday, December 2, 2012

Buena Park Dog Shot By Police Officer

We've been hearing about this incident from various sources, and BPN posted a summary to its Facebook page.  Very disturbing to hear about, and we are eager to hear the police version of the incident (because there are always two sides to a story):

"I thought I'd give you all a heads up on something that happened yesterday. At approximately 3pm yesterday afternoon, a 20 pound English Bull Terrier [UU Note:  An English Bull Terrier is not what is commonly thought of as a pit bull.  Imagine Spuds Mackenzie.  Imagine Target's mascot.  That's the breed of dog we're talking about in this case] belonging to Al and Barb Phillips of West Buena (they own World Gym) was shot by a Chicago Policeman. The dog had 6 hours of surgery and is still alive.

At approximately 3pm yesterday, [Al] noticed that a policeman was writing a parking ticket on h
is vehicle that was parked in front of his own driveway. He came out to talk to the policeman and his dog followed him through the gate, and according to Al, made no threatening gestures. At that point, the policeman pulled out his 9mm and fired two shots severely injuring the dog and then went back to writing the ticket. Apparently there were 10 or so witnesses. Other police showed up shortly and when Al reported what happened, the one in charge indicated that the policeman who fired was following proper procedure.

I don't know any more than this and have not heard the police's side, however, whenever a lethal weapon is discharged in our neighborhood we should be concerned. And, I must admit, I'm having a hard time understanding how a grown man could feel threatened by such a small dog particularly when the owner is standing by.

I am encouraging people to attend the C.A.P.S meeting this Thursday at 7pm at the Library on Buena to hear what CPD has to say about this."


  1. Ten witnesses?

    Went back to writing the ticket?

    That could be, but on first pass it doesn't smell right.

    This is indicative of why I wish cops wore body cameras and sound recorders. Some departments require they be worn.

    Some cops have been put in the trickbag because of what they did and what the camera recorded and others have been saved from false allegations because of them.

    Let's see how this plays out.

  2. going to wait to reply until more details leak out but this sounds pretty awful.

  3. 20lbs is a tiny dog and it's hard to imagine a reason for a grown man to shoot such a dog. A swift kick would be all it would take if he felt threatened. Reminds me of the "Puppycide" incidents I've seen covered by Reason Magazine(

  4. The police are generally, completely out of control.

    Doesn't anybody read the papers? They do as they please and the few who get caught cost the taxpayer millions.

  5. I live directly across the street from where the incident took place. I was in my apartment on the 9th floor and heard the gunshots. I was not aware of what happened, but I did witness about 10 people around and at the time I thought it was odd that after the gunshots went off, that the police officer was writing a parking ticket. Now I understand why.

  6. If the facts are true as presented, my gut reaction is for the dog owners to sue the City. But, the problem with that is that its taxpayers' money that gets paid when the City loses or settles. That's no more just or right than what (allegedly) happened in the first place. I, for one, think government employees (certain ones, including police officers, anyway) should be assigned personal liability (to some extent) because, if they knew they'd be personally liable for unjustified actions, they might think more than just twice before exercising force.

  7. The headline of this article should read: "Pet takes bullet for idiot owner who unleashes dog while challenging cop". Forget the stupidity of letting ones dog out unleashed, which is itself against the law, while actually trying to challenge a ticket. But, in this type of confrontation, it's looks like nothing more than a guy trying to use this poor dog for intimidation. And, sure enough, that's exactly how it was translated. It doesn't matter if it's 20 lbs. or 200 lbs., the cop didn't know this dog and the owner should be cited for reckless endangerment of an animal, as well as allowing it to go unleashed. I've owned several dogs and, under this kind of circumstance, especially, there is no way I would have let my dog go outside ... unless that was my intention. The owner is the a**hole here, not the cop.

  8. Anyone know which officer was invoked, or what he looked like?

  9. As a lawyer I can safely say 43ca's comment is patently stupid. Leash laws do not magically trump the "don't shoot someone's non-threatening pet" laws.

    I go to World Gym and I've seen this dog on several occasions. Not only is he not menacing, if anything he's very docile for a dog. Any idiot cop who feels threatened by a 20 lb dog needs to quit the force and grow a pair of balls.

    The owners should sue for the cost of the medical bills, intentional infliction of emotional distress and any other thing their lawyer thinks will work against these corrupt, trigger happy officers.

  10. That dog was just trying to turn his life around...

  11. 1) the AKC web page says bull terriers average 50-70 lbs. Unless this was a miniature breed of some sort, 20 lbs sounds off.

    2) as a 10-yr resident of Buena Ave, I have to say this Gold's Gym house is annoying at best with people coming and going constantly and all the cars and motorcycles(many with Wisconsin tags) overflowing from the driveway and blocking the sidewalk. Not that this dog ever should have been shot, but when police are trying help neighbors and enforce the laws, don't approach with a loose dog.

    3) Stu Piddy and angry lawyer, the police aren't out of control, the lawless people of Chicago are, and that's why cops have to approach every incident with guns at the ready.

  12. I used to live in the tall apartment building on Buena (at Hazel). Based on TheLTrain's comments, I'm guessing I know the place. I bet it's the a-hole who perpetually refused to shovel his sidewalk in the winter. Seriously, if you live in a million-dollar home, you can afford to pay somebody to come shovel your damn sidewalk when it snows. And I once saw him put french fries and tons of ketchup all over a car that protruded into his driveway less than a foot. Who does that?

    Not that I think his dog should be shot, but I'm less inclined to believe his version of events.

  13. @TheLTrain , so basically, what you're saying is that the owners of golds gym are WI sympathizers that allow noisy activity and, thus, deserve to have this happen to them? You are insane. Not to mention the fact that you knowingly moved to a place that should expect busy traffic.

    I'm a 3 yr uptown resident, 6 year chi resident with a 100lb dog, and we're all from wisconsin. You're going to get yourself in trouble talking like that.

  14. I used to live in Buena Park and knew a very sweet bullie named Valentine. I hope this wasn't him...

  15. Some of you ought to be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves.

    A sworn PEACE OFFICER discharges a deadly weapon and half of the comments are

    "Well I don't think the dog should have been shot but I really didn't like that guy anyway so whatever."

    It's no wonder we can't get out of a recession. We can't even show simple, basic compassion or respect.

    This guy isn't sworn to protect and serve the community. That cop is.

  16. An angry, aggressive dog can be a lethal weapon. I even keep my poodle, Poochy on a leash when I take him for a walk.

  17. ChiTownPhilly, there's a HUGE difference between "I didn't like the guy so whatever" and "I'm less inclined to believe his version of events." I'm not sure what the recession has to do with your reading comprehension, "so whatever."

  18. If the dog owner is the same a-hole who drives a yellow hummer, then i'm sorry to say it, but I can see how this turned out this way. Either the owner of the gym or someone who works for him used to drive a yellow hummer and thought the world was his parking space and also his dumpster. The same attitude must have carried over to this incident and there you have it

  19. C'mon, guys, this isn't about shoveling a sidewalk or other stuff from the past. Let's keep comments about this incident.

  20. people are so entertaining. All the conclusions that many start jumping to before we really know what happened. it's funny and sad all at the same time.

  21. First I hope the dog will be okay and recover as fully as possible.

    Second, I hope the reason the cop shot the dog is because he felt legitimately threatened by the dog and not just because he felt annoyed by its owner and knew he could get away with this, though my hunch is it is the later. Seems like some people posting here feel some pre-existing enmity for the dog's owner which may factor into their judgement about the events. I wonder if the cop also had some pre-existing enmity that factored into his judgement on whether or not to pull the trigger.

  22. I was the owner of Valentine the english bull terrier that Clair mentioned.(Clair Valentine made her transition at least 5 years ago. She was 10 1/2 yrs old when she made her transition. She was never allowed to be off of a leash outside).
    I've known the Phillips family. I know that Barbara has owned several english bull terriers. I knew the bull terriers she had in the 1990s. They were both friendly toward people. When it came to dogs well that was another story.
    The breed is a wonderfully people/child friendly dog. They are known as the "clowns" of the dog world.

    This is what someone who was a witness to the incident had to say...the dog was just wandering around and the cop screamed to the guy "get your dog man" - the dog wasn't acting the least bit aggressive or even directly approaching the offer. the office drew his gun and fired twice at the puppy. i walked to see if the dog was dead - but luckily he was running down the street. the owner wasn't able to run, so i caught up to him, asked what the dogs name was and chased after him.

    i got him cornered in someone's drive a few blocks away - he was crouched in some bushes. i called his name a few times until he came crawling over to me on his belly. he was shaking horribly. at first i thought he was ok, but the bullet got him..

    So what we have is a police officer who is afraid of a puppy and writing a ticket on a car of a person whose property the drive way belonged to.

    We do have police officers who don't belong on the force and who have been to war zones way too many times. They are now becoming problems to the taxpayers. When it costs us all enough we'll finally deal with it. We saw the same thing happen in the 1960s and 1970s. We're still paying for those officers ie John Burge and company.

  23. So, basically... jerk's dog shot in an incident of a jerk police officer using excessive force.

  24. To be honest, I think Dog Owners are out of control. I don't care how big your dog is, or how 'good' your dog is, I've had several instances where people dogs, jumped on me, whether he's playing or not that's not cool. This could have been the case because I've heard several excuses, like oh, he's just playing, etc.

    Leaving your dog's crap all over the place is not cool. Your dog peeing all over the place is not cool. Bringing your dog along to dispute a ticket with an officer is not cool. Suing over your own stupidity is not cool. Get some sense in your head.

  25. Most of the comments from those defending the police are stupid and shallow. Read my post and try to follow the logic...

    The officer KNOWS the beat that he works. He shot the dog and went back to writing the ticket! DUH, if he was scared his hand would be shaking, and he would have more to do/say than to simply go back to writing the "parking" ticket. I'm willing to bet that he knew the owner of the car that he was ticketing because he did not like him.
    The officer took the opportunity to shoot a helpless dog, because he thought he had the right to do so, not because he was frightened...

  26. If the witness accounts are accurate and the police officer went back to writing the ticket, that just doesn't even remotely fit the range of expected responses of someone who A) felt threatened for their life and B) just went through a "once in a career" type of event.

    If the dog was off his leash, write them a ticket - Fine.

    This is going to be an interesting case to watch...

  27. I'm utterly appalled at the people who have left disparaging remarks about the dog and his owner. Do you really think that the dog deserved to get shot?!?!?!

    @a16: Grow up. Not all dog owners leave their dog's poop behind. As far as pee, that stuff evaporates in minutes, so get over it. If you don't like dogs, that's one thing, but I don't want to hear it or read how bothered you are by it. Secondly, this isn't about dog owners whose dogs are off leash. It's about a police officer who SHOT SOMEONE'S DOG! A family member. For walking around.

    There is just no possible way you can condone shooting a dog. I'm willing to bet that if the officer said, "I'll have to shoot your dog if you don't leash him," the owner would have promptly leashed him. It's a clear overreaction to a minor complain-able offense.

    Like Stash said, write him a ticket. Don't shoot his dog. What a prick.

  28. I have met that puppy on several occasions. He is adorable, and always so friendly. There has to be more to this story. I just can't imagine a cop being threatened by that particular pooch. So sad. Hope he recovers very soon.

  29. Look up the medical definition of psychopath..then go back and read the story again of the "officer's" judgement from the beginning.. First he writes a ticket ..because he wants to not because the car was illegally was the homeowner's driveway it was in front of..a normal officer would've gone up and knocked on the door first if he was concerned about the car blocking a know, common sense.. He takes an opportunity to shoot at a living creature because he can..and calmly goes back to writing the ticket with the homeowner right there..perhaps there's no parking in the street, I don't know..but ANYONE with an ounce of compassion that shoots and hits a pet would be upset.. He showed NOTHING.. THAT is the major theme that separates psychopaths from the many other severe personality disorders. If the facts pan out to be true..and it seems they will..he should be charged criminally..and he should be drug tested for drugs/steriods..and have to undergo a full mental evaluation.. if found either on drugs/steriods or having a mental disorder he should be banned from owning any type of weapons ever again.. if he's found drug free and no diagnose of mental disorder he
    should still be fired and held liable for criminally discharging a firearm.. and the homeowner should sue for damages, property and anquish.. I would like to see the officer's side of the story.. much can gleaned about his personality in how he tells the story..

  30. I got a parking ticket from that same officer. He's a nutcase. He wrote me up for parking on the sidewalk / parkway when I was 30 foot into the property. I told him the ticket was factually incorrect and he blew me off and told me to tell it to the judge. I called a supervisor and demanded a ticket correction. Two wasted hours into it the officer was instructed to correct the ticket. But, he never filed the correction and I had to go waste more time going to court to "Tell it to the judge." In short, this guy is a nutcase who has no respect for the community, his supervisors, or the court system.