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Deputy who killed Rock Hill dog considered a hero to a family he helped in 2012

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The York County Sheriff's deputy who killed a 9-year-old dog on a chain in its own yard is still considered by some in the area as a hero, Rock Hill Herald Online reported March 7.

This Examiner article covered the York County tragedy, which happened last Tuesday.

Back in January 2012, Officer Reed, a nine year veteran of the force, is credited with saving the life of a family by turning their dilapidated Lesslie property into a home the family could be proud of. Lessie is a small community in the Rock Hill area,

Sara Barnstable lives with her boyfriend Juan Mata-Morales, and their 3-year-old daughter, Maddisyn. Back in 2012, Reed took away the toddler and an older son living with the couple because the home wasn't a fit place to live.

At that time the house had no heat or running water. The family kept water in the tub to flush the toilet. They wore heavy coats inside the home, where holes could be found in the walls and floor.

Reed made the call to Social Services to get the children out of the home.

Deputy Jonathan Reed, along with Deputy Chad Davis then set out on a mission to help that family. They fixed the house, going so far as to raise donations (including money given by Reed himself), and collected a truckload of donations to furnish the home properly.

Reed then went before the family judge and told him the house was now fit to be a home for the two children. After that, he picked up the kids from Social Services and reunited them with their parents. Reed, along with others, helped Mata-Morales find a job to support his family.

“So much of what we have here, how we have been able to make it this far, is because of the deputies who helped us. He cared about me. He looked me in the eyes and he said he would help. That he would be back. And he did come back."

Captain Allen Brandon, head of the patrol division described Reed stating

“If a person is not compassionate, we don’t want them,” Brandon said. “People do this job to serve people. It is not for glamour. It is not for money. It is to help people. That is who Jonathan Reed is."

The York County Sheriff's Office stands behind Reeds decision to fire his weapon.

Sara Barnstable, upon hearing about Scarlett being shot, was concerned about whether Reed had been injured. She believes an officers safety should come first, and the shooting of a family dog was a tragic accident.

The photo with this article shows

Top: Deputies Reed and Cook with the Barnstable family
Middle: Scarlett, shot and killed by Deputy Reed last Tuesday
Bottom: Deputies Reed and Cook with Maddie, one of the children removed from the home in 2012

Your comments are welcome.

NOTE: The sole reason I did this follow up article is to give both sides of the story. My personal opinion is since the officer had time to draw his weapon, why didn't he have time to take a few steps back to be out of reach of the dog. It in no way condones his most recent behavior.

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

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