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Texas man forced to strangle his dog in mercy killing after deputy leaves scene

Candy, shot by Rains County Sheriff's deputy
Middleton family photo

UPDATED APRIL 24, 2014 New article here.

UPDATED APRIL 23, 2014 A petition is now available here asking for justice for Candy.

UPDATED: April 22, 2014 8:30pm The family has posted the following on the Justice for Candy Middleton Facebook page

Rains Co. Sheriff office phone number is 9034733181. The Deputy who committed this terrible act is named Jerred Dooley, badge #510. This is for those requesting this information. Please feel free to send letters to newspapers, contact tv stations, etc.

A Texas man is grieving the death of his dog, whom he had to strangle and drown with his bare hands following shooting by police. KLTV reported the story on April 22.

Cole Middleton, a resident of Rains County, is mourning the death of his cow dog Candy after she was shot by a Rains County Sheriff's Department deputy.The incident happened on the 6800 block of Farm to Market 514, which is in Rains County.

Cole owns a dairy farm, and arrived home at around 11 a.m. Friday while his wife Jayna was still out shopping. When he discovered his house had been broken into, Cole called 911. Among the items stolen were his guns, iPad and his wife's jewelry.

Eventually Cole went back to harvesting as he waited for an officer to arrive. That's when the unthinkable happened. Candy began barking when the officer pulled into his driveway. According to Cole, the dog wasn't attacking, she was merely letting Cole know a stranger was on the property, as she'd been trained to do.

The officer got out of the car, and under the reason they all give, said he shot Candy because he "feared for his life."

Now for the kicker. Candy is laying in the yard, suffering from the gunshot to her head. Cole says he begged and pleaded with the officer to shoot her again to put her out of her misery.

At this time, the officer returned to his vehicle and drove away.

Since his firearms had been stolen, Cole had only one choice left. He had to strangle and drown Candy to put her out of her misery.

It wasn't long before other law enforcement officers arrived, and their first question was whose blood was on Cole's shirt. Cole stated

“They then asked well whose blood is on your shirt. That is the blood of my dog that I was holding because this deputy pulled up and shot her in my yard. Then the tasers were put away and the pistols withdrawn."

Cole filled out a burglary report with the Rains County Sheriff's Department. After that, he buried Candy at the foot of her favorite tree.

The Texas Rangers are investigating the incident. Sheriff David Traylor has declined answering questions about the incident. There's no word on whether the officer involved is still on active duty.

This case is a bit different, since officers were quick to pull their Taser's on Cole. That action suggests the officers have had training in withdrawal a non-lethal method of defense. So why did the officer who shot Candy feel the need to draw his gun first? Especially on a dog, whom the owner has stated, was only barking.

A Facebook page has been set up here.

A video is available here where Cole describes what happened. The police have posted their own video here. Please comment below on your feelings about this case.

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

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