An Ardmore family says a police officer in the city shot and killed their pit bull after it escaped from their yard last week. Police say the dog was aggressive and a nuisance and had to be euthanized.
The family says their pit bull, "Cali", was shot and killed by an Ardmore Police officer and an animal control officer last week. FOX 25 filed an open records request with the city for details relating the incident.
On March 19, Ardmore police say they were called to a home in the 400 block of 15th Ave. NW in Ardmore around 9:30 AM to a report of a pit bull in the area. According to the report, the caller told police the dog consistently ran loose in the area.
Officer Brice Woolly wrote in his report that the dog was not aggressive towards the officers but was against animal control and several residents in the area. Police say a USPS delivery driver said he was confronted by a dog matching "Cali's" description in January and she would not allow him to get out of his mail truck. A neighbor approached the driver and said she knew the dog and took her home.
The officer said the dog was wearing a collar but didn't have any tags. Animal control officers told police they had tried to catch the dog multiple times and tried to discover who the dog belonged to but were unable to do so.
The police report states because of that reason, it was determined the dog would be euthanized.
Officer Woolly reported that he used his assigned shotgun and fired one shot into the dog. He said the dog was still breathing but was down when he instructed an animal control officer to fire a .22 caliber into the dog.
About ten minutes after the dog was put down, a female walked up and asked if the officers had her dog. She described it to them and they said they had the dog but it was put down because it "had been a continuing nuisance and [they] were unable to determine who owned the dog."
Just after 2:00 PM on March 19, the dog's owner came to the police department to talk with a supervisor. According to the police report, she said that her neighbor watched the incident happen.
On Friday, police called the neighbor to discuss what happened when the dog was shot. The neighbor said while he didn't see the shot, he heard it and the officer's reaction.
The neighbor said after Officer Woolly shot the dog, he told the animal control officer "Did you see the way it's collar flew up into the air when I blew it's head off? It was awesome!" He said Woolly then bragged about another dog he shot with his handgun a few days before.
The neighbor then asked the officers if they shot his dog in his fence too. The animal control officer said they shot that dog because it barked at the mailman, according to the neighbor.
When he went back into his house, he heard another shot. He said he then walked back outside as the two officers carried the dog away. He said he heard Officer Woolly tell the animal control officer "we are just going to write this up in the report as the dog tried to attack me and you and others in the neighborhood." The neighbor told police it sounded as if he was coaching the animal control officer on what to say so the stories match up.
The other shooting
FOX 25 filed a separate open records request with the city for Officer Woolly's referenced incident.
On Friday, March 14, Officer Woolly filed another report that states he shot a pit bull that residents had said was aggressive towards children. The animal control officer said they had received several calls about the dog in recent weeks.
The dog's owner was cited several times but refused to show up for city court and would not sign complaints about the dog being aggressive and loose. Officer Wolly wrote that it was decided the dog would be put down because the owner would not catch it or take responsibility for it.
He said he shot the dog twice with his service pistol but it didn't kill the animal. He said he pulled the trigger two more times before the dog was put down.
The owner of that dog was never located.
Since the March 19 incident, a Facebook page called "Justice for Cali" was started with more than 2,000 likes and growing. A petition on Change.org was also started that says it wants the officer to be relieved of his duties. So far, there are more than 16,000 signatures on the petition.
A courier for the USPS and the animal control officer both gave police written statements about the dog, indicating that it was violent and aggressive towards them.
Ardmore Police says the case has been closed.