A New Jersey police confrontation with a pit bull led to a shooting of the animal, and both the cops and the dog’s owners are facing legal scrutiny.
The Keyport, New Jersey, Police Department published bodycam footage Tuesday of a 911 response regarding a dangerous dog.
Authorities had been told that the “aggressive” dog cornered a woman walking her own pet in the neighborhood Oct. 22, according to News 12 New Jersey.
As officers arrived in a nearby parking lot, the sound of the loud, barking dog was evident in the footage.
When the pit bull suddenly appeared and moved quickly toward one officer, the officer fired at the animal two times, striking it at least once in the shoulder, according to News12.
One of the officers defends his peer’s actions in the bodycam footage.
“You had no choice, bro. Dog was about to bite you.”
The dog survived the shooting, and is recovering from a gunshot wound. However, its owners are fighting a court order to have the animal euthanized, and are facing a criminal charge of possession of a dangerous dog, according to News 12 New Jersey.
The police response is being investigated by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office of Professional Responsibility, according to News 12.
The family that owns the pit bull objected to the way the animal was treated.
One member of the Ferrara family told News12 that the situation could’ve been handled with pepper spray, a taser or even a tranquilizer.
Alexyss Ferrara, citing a Ring doorbell camera, described a sequence of events that seems to differ from the bodycam footage.
“I watched the video of it, they called his name. He came prancing over all happy and they fired shots at him, he dodged the bullets,” the dog owner claimed.
“They followed him, and they took one or two more shots at him.”
The Ferrara family claims the doorbell camera captured the shooting of the dog in the way they describe; however, that footage did not appear to have been released as of Friday.
In 2019, researchers at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center looked at various studies on dog bites and found that pit bulls were responsible for the highest percentage of reported bites (22.5 percent), followed by mixed breeds (21.2 percent) and German shepherds (17.8 percent).
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