A New Mexico family said they’re devastated after their dog was shot and killed by the police chief. It sparked outrage, but the chief says there’s more to the story.
It started at a home off Florence in Texico, and ended several blocks away. Police Chief Doug Bowman said he didn’t want to kill the dog, but stands by his actions.
“I am not out here to just kill animals in this town, but I’ve got to protect the citizens of the community, and at that time that’s what I had to do,” said Bowman.
Surveillance video from the owner’s house captures part of the incident.
It shows an animal control officer with a snare approach the dog, but leave without capturing it. Then, the chief arrived in his SUV, got out and walked down the street.
The chief says what the video doesn’t show is what triggered neighbors to call 911 in the first place — the dog running around, barking and growling. He says the dog had pinned visiting insurance adjusters in their car, and had a woman and her young daughter cornered outside their home.
“Then it started coming, like running, barking and growling in an aggressive way. My daughter was out with me so I put her behind me and walked back to the wall and I picked up a stick,” said Alicia Mendez.
On Facebook, the owner is bashing Bowman, saying his dog was “murdered.” Others commented, expressing anger over the shooting.
The owner also shared happy videos of his dog playing around, saying he’s harmless.
Bowman said they did everything they could to capture the dog, but after lunging at several people and then coming at him, he pulled the trigger.
Bowman also said they’ve talked to the owners in the past about keeping the dog contained.
City ordinance states dogs must be in a yard or on a leash or chain, if not in the yard at all times.
KRQE News 13 reached out to the owner for a comment, but did not hear back.
He has since deleted his Facebook posts.