An family in Canyon County, Texas is grieving their dog this week. Please take the time to read the story of Blue, owned and loved by Toni and Tom Walker.
Blue, a miniature Australian shepherd, was shot the evening of July 23 when he barked at a Randall County Sheriff's deputy who had been called to the house by a neighbor. The deputy was in close range to their 7-month-old son Wyatt.
According to the Walker's, it was agreed upon by them and the deputy that the property was large enough to allow Blue his freedom.
A statement on their Facebook: Justice for Blue page describes the horror of losing their family member.
"The officer was called to my house because my dogs were loose and my neighbor don't like them. The officer walked passed my dogs knocked on my door and I invited him in. We discussed the law and we both agreed that by law I have enough property for my dogs to be out. The officer walked out the door and I followed him. As I turned around to shut my door the officer shot blue twice. Once in the leg and once in the neck. I had to ask him to put him down as he was going to let him suffer in my yard. The officer put him down and left. Blues only crime was being a dog and barking. This all happened in front of my and my son. Blue was not charging or being aggressive. He didn't have a mean bone in his body. He loved life and everyone he met. The officer had no reason to use lethal force a simple no and blue would have stopped barking."
The family has spoken with an attorney, who said bringing awareness to the case is the best thing they can do at this point.
"We have tried to file a complaint and get the report and the dash cam and they are not cooperating. Blue meant the world to us and we are going to do everything in our power to bring him justice."
One motivation for bringing justice for Blue is due to the officer placing Wyatt in danger. What if one of the bullets had ricocheted and hit Wyatt or his parents? Several 'police shooting dogs cases over the past several years have resulted with either the officer involved or an innocent bystander being injured.
Blue has already been laid to rest. It's hard to suggest to the family to go dig up their dog, but in the case of Justice for Candy Middleton, I contacted that family, and the resulting necropsy showed then Rains County Officer, Jarrod Dooley, had lied about a shooting.
If there's any chance Blue was shot retreating from the officer, it would be worth the grief to get an official report that can be used in court.
Information for Randall County Sheriff's Office is listed below.
The Randall County Sheriff's Office
9100 Georgia St S, Amarillo, TX 79118
This article may be amended once a report can be obtained using the Freedom of Information Act. Chances are, we'll hear the same old story that Blue was "charging" and the officer feared for his life.
It's sad, but many times police kill a family dog simply because they can. Blue died on his own property, surrounded by those who loved him. He died at the hands of a man paid to 'protect and serve.' This officers actions protected no one, and put others in dangers.
One way or another, Blue will get justice. His death won't be in vain, as his name is added to the list of dogs shot by police. Choose your attorney well, Tom and Toni. You definitely have a case here.