Chicago woman claims CPD officer had no reason to shoot, kill her dog

A Hegewisch woman is calling for justice after her dog was shot by a Chicago police officer.

The 6-year-old pitbull, named 'Knuckles,' was so severely injured by the gunfire that it had to be euthanized.

The dogs owner, Tiffany West, is the one who called police. She was concerned about an intruder near her friend's apartment.

When she saw the police SUV pull up to her home, her relief was met almost immediately with shock.

"That's when I see him get out of the vehicle and shoot my dog, five times in rapid succession, it was probably 5 shots in three seconds," West said.

Chicago Police say the dog was aggressive and deadly force was necessary.

According to the officer's report, "A loose dog charged aggressively at an officer. The officer attempted to back away from the dog who continued to charge aggressively... In fear for his safety, the officer discharged his weapon, striking the dog."

Wests' friend, Steve Cassettari, was with her the night the dog was shot.

"If I was in his position, I would have at least fired some kind of a warning shot or said hey, try to subdue your dog, anything," he said.

In 2013, the Chicago Police Department teamed up with the National Canine Research Council and animal advocacy group, Safe Humane Chicago, to produce videos that train officers how to handle dogs.

Currently, CPD has no policy on how an officer should respond to an aggressive animal if attacked.

Under the department's directive on "use of deadly force," an officer can fire if an assailant or animal's actions are likely to cause death or serious injury.

West is still trying to sort out how it happened to her dog.

As she clutched his ashes she told FOX 32, "You know how people say, take a bullet for a family member and I wish it had been me, I wish one of the bullets would have went through him and hit me, because it would have been a whole different story."

To see the CPD training videos, click here

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