Pet killed in the name of ‘officer safety’

Perhaps this gives an idea as to where Canadian police officers are getting the idea that they can assault civilians and violate human rights, in the name of “officer safety”.

Canadian police training is influenced by the American experience, which is generally more dangerous than policing in Canada. That helps to account for the atrocious over-reactions and incidents of ‘playing cowboy’ that we have seen over the 45 years that I have been in this country.

The story below is particularly distressing, both for the arrogance of the police officers involved, for their contemptuous dismissal of the owner’s offer to lock up his dog, and for the callous termination of the dog’s life – a pet that posed no threat, and was wagging its tail in welcome.

More and more, the police are starting to come across as the enemy. This is not good for us or, ultimately, for them.

I can’t use an American example to support my call for an inquiry into policing in Canada, but the fact is that as America goes, so do we. Let’s take action now, before we end up like Chicago.

Jeff Goodall.

Chicago police must pay 330k for killing dog in home raid

The Lookout, Yahoo! News

Liz Goodwin: August 19th, 2011

A federal jury says Chicago law enforcement must pay $330,000 to a family after officers shot their dog during a home raid that turned up no illegal activity.

Thomas Russell, then 18, opened the door to his home in February 2009 to find police officers with their guns drawn. He asked if he could lock up his 9-year-old black labrador, named Lady, before letting the officers inside. The Chicago Tribune describes what happened next:

Police refused the request and came into the house, the lawsuit said. When Lady came loping around the corner with her tail wagging, Officer Richard Antonsen shot the dog, according to the suit, which alleged excessive force, false arrest and illegal seizure for taking the dog’s life. (Emphasis in original.)

The cops handcuffed Russell and his 16-year-old brother, and eventually charged Russell with obstructing their operation. He was found not guilty. According to NBC, the jury awarded $175,000 to Russell, $85,000 to his little brother, and $35,000 each to the brothers’ parents. The officer who shot the dog owes $2,000 in damages, and his supervisor owes $1,000, according to NBC.

A law enforcement spokeswoman told the Tribune that the officers were protecting themselves.

See original here.

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