Cops accused of stiffing family for vet bill after shooting their dog
A family in El Monte, California criticized local police on Friday for both shooting one of their dogs dead then reneging on an offer to pay for the animal’s treatment.
KABC-TV reported that the family’s home security system captured officers entering his home on Wednesday in defiance of two signs advising, “Beware of Dog.”
“They just came in our door without calling us or anything,” 11-year-old Winston Nguyen said to the station. “Then our dog ran up to the police and the police shot it.”
Police were called to the Nguyens’ home after Nguyen’s 14-year-old brother allegedly ran away. Family members told the station they advised authorities to call ahead of the officers’ arrival. Security camera footage set up by his father, Chi Nguyen, shows two officers entering the residence and leaving the gate open.
The footage then shows one officer petting one dog, a pit bull named Rascal, before making his way back to the gate. At that point, a second dog, a German Shepherd named Kiki, can be seen charging toward the gate then back toward the door.
“Police thought the dog was attacking, so she shot,” Nguyen’s father Chi told KTLA-TV, through translation provided by Winston Nguyen.
Authorities offered to pay for veterinary care for Kiki, the family told both stations, only to withdraw the offer after learning it would cost $7,000 to treat the gunshot wound inflicted by the officer. Lacking the money to pay for her care, the family opted to euthanize the dog.
“The incident is being treated as an officer-involved shooting and is under investigation,” a city spokesperson told KABC in a statement. “As such, the city cannot comment on this matter.”
The family’s teenage son, who was not identified, was later found to be staying with a friend, though he has not come home.
Watch KABC’s report, aired Friday, below.