Owner of pit bull shot by Austin police officer says dog was chained


by TYLER SIESWERDA / KVUE News and photojournalist DEREK RASOR


Posted on August 16, 2012 at 9:43 PM

Updated Friday, Aug 17 at 10:22 AM

AUSTIN -- A blood stain in the grass is a sad reminder for the Miller family.

"And we hear 'pow, pow, pow,' and there's our dog shot and APD is standing right there," said Brittany Miller.

Miller said an Austin police officer pulled the trigger killing her pit bull. As she spoke, Miller showed a video clip from last week of Papa, the pit bull, playing with her two-year-old daughter.
"They never once announced that they were coming. They never once announced that they were here. They never once said, 'Get your dog.' They just shot the dog," Miller said. "I was mad. I was crying. That was my dog. We've had that dog for 10 years. "
Miller said she called the police earlier in the day about a break-in, but officers did not show up until about three hours later.  
Police said officers were there to write the burglary report and were checking the outside of the house when the dog attacked.
Neighbor Larri Dundee didn't see what happened but was familiar with Papa.
"It all depends on if the dog was really attacking him because the dog's on a chain. I've never seen him be aggressive, so I don't know for sure. I've walked by before, and the dog always barks at me, but they always tell him to stop, and he stops," said Dundee.
Miller now has to tell her daughter what happened to Papa, a conversation she never wanted to have.       
The Austin Police Department had no further comment Thursday night.
A couple of months ago, the department changed its policy on using deadly force against animals after another officer killed a dog. Officers must now decide if there was imminent danger of bodily harm.