VALLEJO (CBS SF) – A Vallejo family demands answers after a police officer shot and killed one of their dogs when he came to their house Wednesday to investigate an identity theft.
Officer Chase Calhoun went to the family’s home near the corner of Kentucky and Trinity streets around noon Wednesday to take a statement. According to Vallejo Police, he heard two dogs growl, then saw them charge, as he opened the front gate of the home.
Calhoun fired two rounds, instantly killing an 11-year-old Labrador mix named Belle. The other dog, a 14-year-old Australian shepherd mix named Flicka, was unharmed.
The dogs’ owner, Loren Mollner, said his wife, Erika Gregory, was at home with their son and daughter at the time, and was told police do not visit homes to take reports of identity theft.
“They said, we don’t come out. We don’t investigate identity theft. We only investigate murders and car thefts. Next thing she knows, she hears shots. She hits the floor,” Mollner said.
Mollner said his wife assumed there was some kind of shootout happening, only to emerge from the home and find her dog lying in a pool of blood and a police officer at the street repeating, “I’m sorry.”
“He said he was scared,” Mollner said, and shot the dog because he felt threatened.
Police said the officer tried to back up, but because the dogs were aggressive he was forced to fire two rounds at the closest animal.
Mollner said his dogs do bark at strangers, but have never attacked anyone, and have been friendly to package deliverers and other visitors. He said his wife would have kept the dogs indoors if she had known a police officer was on his way.
“These are not dangerous dogs,” he said, adding they were rescue dogs from the Milo Foundation they had adopted about 10 years ago.
Mollner said is not interested in pursuing litigation against the police department, and would rather have the officer deliver a more formal apology to the family.
(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)