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Baltimore PD officer charged with felony animal cruelty after dog's throat slit

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A Baltimore Police Department officer has been charged with felony animal cruelty resulting from the way he handled a dog at large call. WBAL News reported the story June 18.

Police were called June 14 to a Grundy Street residence in southeast Baltimore after a stray dog nipped someone trying to rescue the dog.

Sarah Gossard, the owner of a 7-year-old Shar-pei named Nala, told WBAL she didn't doubt that Nala bit someone. Her dog was lost, alone and frightened. It's what happened after Nala was secured using a catch pole that has enraged animal lovers worldwide.

A video can be seen here.

After being secured, one of the officers took a knife and cut the dog's throat. A statement was issued by Baltimore Police Deputy Commissioner Dean Palmer stating

"Unfortunately, at some point after the dog was contained, one of our officers used a knife and cut the dog's throat. This is outrageous and unacceptable breach of our protocol. We have no words to describe this. To say that we are appalled at this allegation is an understatement."

Nala died from this injury. The officer's name wasn't immediately released, but he is under suspension without pay. Sarah commented on his suspension saying

"I don't want him to have his job, I don't want him to be able to go out on calls and react like that to a person, to a dog, to anything. That's not OK, that's not OK."

Part of the investigation is in finding out whether the other officers responding to the call knew this officer had committed such an act, and whether procedure was followed to report it.

On their Facebook page, Baltimore Police Department posted

"The dog has died as a result of this incident. We as an agency are appalled by this incident and will not condone such behaviour. The officer involved has been suspended without pay and will be arrested for felony animal cruelty charges."

Commander Palmer says the department didn't learn of the situation until Monday.

A Facebook page has been set up in Nala's memory.

For more of Elisa's articles on dogs shot by police, click here.

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