A Mooresville resident whose dog was shot by police on October 17 is thankful her dog is still alive and may need her front paw amputated, Police State USA reported October 25. The pit bull, a seven-year-old family dog named Pinch, is being shown support worldwide as her story has gone viral on the internet.
Melissa Daughtry Loper, Pinch's owner, described what happened that day on her Facebook page. Melissa was inside her home at the time Pinch was shot.
"Yesterday was a terrible day for me. An officer from the Mooresville Police Department came to my house, bent down on his knee and called my chihuahua to come to him out of my yard. Well she started walking to him...and so did my pit bull. The officers backup started to pull out her taser but before she could the other officer that was on his knee managed to stand up and fire his 9mm gun at my pit bull. Hitting her 3 times AND busting the back window out of my Suburban. One of the bullets went into Pichs paw and shattered the bones. The others were deep muscle wounds in her other legs. Thank GOD we found a vet to help us with her. She had surgery last night and is going to be okay. But here's my question...What would you do if an officer fired his gun at your house just to hit a dog who was not threatening him. He shot at her just because she was a pit bull. And he was scared. my chihuahua wouldn've bit him before Pinch would've. Even the vets said she was a wonderful dog and very gentle even with half her paw blew off. So I went outside the door and the male officer was standing there, with his hands up in the air saying he just shot my dog three times. "
The Mooresville Police Department stated on their Facebook page that on October 17 at 1:12 p.m. an officer observed two dogs in the road in the 900 block of West Wilson Avenue. One of the dogs allegedly became aggressive when the officer exited his vehicle and attempted to get the dog to get out of the road. The officer deployed a Taser, but missed the dog.
At this time, the dogs ran into a nearby residential neighborhood, and the officer called Iredell County Animal Control for backup.Officers then entered the residential neighborhood, where they were able to locate the dogs in a cul-de-sac.
Melissa claims the backup officer started to pull out her Taser, but before this officer had a chance to use a non-lethal deterrent on Pinch, the other officer fired his weapon. Pinch was hit by three bullets, and a bullet shattered the back glass of her Surburban.
Neighbor Shirley Simmons told WCCB Charlotte
“I thought it was a stun gun. I heard three shots, but I thought it was a stun gun. I'm surprised he used a gun.”
The Mooresville Police Department has offered to replace the glass on the Surburban, but not to cover Pinch's vet bills, which have now reached more than $3000. Anyone wishing to donate to Pinch's care is asked to call the Long Animal Hospital in Charlotte at 704-523-2996.
The department reported the incident is under investigation.
The Mooresville Tribune reported a similar dog shooting near Troutman on August 22,2013, making this the second incident in less than two months.