Police officers shot a pit bull on Staten Island on Saturday afternoon after it allegedly attacked its owner. At least that's what cops are telling SILive, NY Post and A Walk In The Park. But the family of the shot dog, Baby Girl, have a much different story: the brother of the injured dog's owner wrote on Facebook that the officer shot the dog after the incident was already under control, and that the officer shot a dog who wasn't involved in the incident. "The bullet entrance and exit wounds show the dog was running away, NOT [TOWARD] the cop like that coward officer claims. The fight was already under control, yet hero cop of the day felt it necessary to pull out her gun and shoot. THIS DOG WASNT EVEN THE ONE THAT WAS FIGHTING."
According to cops, the owner was walking with her unleashed dog at Schmul Park in Travis around 1 p.m. Saturday. Three dogs were involved in the incident, though it is unclear whether all three belonged to the woman. Two of the dogs started fighting, and when the woman went to break them up, one bit her. "Responding officers tried to help her, and in the attempt to get the dog off her, shots were fired," a police spokesman said.
Witness Ray Rehueo, who lives across the street from the park, told SILive he saw two women walking three dogs, including one who was off leash. Rehueo said he heard five gun shots and then saw the dog running up from the field, bleeding heavily from its side. He also defended the cop's decision to shoot: "He saw how aggressive the dog got and shot it. I'm sure he did the right thing. You see a pit bull attacking a woman—practically taking her hand off—you gotta do what you gotta do," Rehueo said.
But the brother of the owner, who was treated for her hand injuries at Richmond University Medical Center, wrote a long post on Facebook refuting the cops statement. In addition to shooting the wrong dog after the incident was over, the brother claims cops left the dog in the back of an ESU truck for an hour while she bled out and told the family they couldn't find it. "They lied hopeing [sic] the dog would just die so they could dispose of her and pretend the shooting never occurred," he wrote.
S.N.A.R.R Animal Rescue Northeast, the group that rescued Baby Girl before she was adopted, spread the brother's message and has been updating her condition since. Founder Robin Menard posted this about the incident:
Two other dogs were in a scuffle. The dogs did not " attack an turn on their owner ". She accidentally got bitten while breaking up the scuffle. Baby Girl was NOT involved ( it was two other family dogs) and was running AWAY from the fight when cops fired 3 rounds. Baby Girl was shot in the stomach. She is now fighting for her life and her adopters are paying for a 6000 surgery. They are doing whatever they can. Baby Girl has never had an issue with people or other dogs. She is best friends with a bunny rabbit... Yes. A bunny!
If you'd like to donate to help Baby Girl (who is still alive, despite some reports) and her family, that can be made via paypal using email email@example.com. They ask that you add "Baby Girl" to the subject so the donation will go to the vet or family.