1 dog dead, 1 injured after Red Bluff officer-involved shooting
RED BLUFF, Calif. - The Red Bluff Police Department and the Tehama County District Attorney's Office are investigating a shooting that led to one dog being seriously injured and another being killed Sunday.
Police said at approximately 9:30 a.m., the Red Bluff Police Department received a call about two large dogs who were running loose on Nelson Drive. The person calling police said the dogs chased a small girl, who was riding a bicycle, and that the dogs were acting aggressively.
A Red Bluff Police officer arrived on scene by himself and as he approached the two St. Bernards, they reportedly barked at him aggressively. Officials said the officer used his pepper spray to deter the dogs, at which time they turned away from the officer and ran down the street. Officials said the officer then followed the dogs while in his patrol car to try and find the owner and the home from where the dogs came from.
The officer said when the dogs turned into the front yard of a home, he pulled his car ahead of the dogs and got out of his vehicle. The officer reported that he spoke with a person who lived in a nearby house and as he was doing so, he said the dogs began barking at him and coming towards him aggressively.
Officials said the officer then became trapped between his vehicle and a fence as the dogs continued to approach him. At that point, the officer fired several shots at the dogs injuring the one closest to him, according to police. The officer said the second dog did not run away when the shots were fired but continued to bark aggressively.
Officials said the officer then fired multiple shots at the second dog, killing him.
Police said after the shooting, many neighbors became hostile, delaying emergency treatment for the injured dog until the situation was calmed and safe. Police said the injured dog was transported to Valley Veterinary Clinic where a vet was notified of the shooting and was waiting to provide treatment. The dog was then transported to the Cottonwood Veterinary Clinic after it was determined the Valley Veterinary Clinic did not have the equipment to treat the wounds.
Officials said the dog's current condition was unknown as of Sunday night.
After the shooting, the Red Bluff Police Department initiated an investigation. Also, due to the sensitive nature of the incident. the Tehama County District Attorney's Office was asked to provide independent findings on the incident.
Officials said during the investigation, it was learned that the two dogs chased a small girl on her bike, frightening her. They also reported that one of the dogs had bit a resident and aggressively came at another, who felt he was going to be bit and seriously injured. Officials also learned that the dogs had been brought into the neighborhood a couple of days ago and had escaped from the home where they were staying.
The owner of the dogs was not there at the time of the investigation but has been notified of what happened.
Officials said detectives continue to investigate the incident and they are asking the community to be patient with the investigative process. Additional information will be provided at the conclusion of the investigation.
Amy Ball, a woman who says she witnessed the entire incident, had a different account of what happened. She noted that she had never seen the dogs in the neighborhood before but when she approached them to see if they had collars, they did not bark or growl.
Ball said after returning back into her home, she noticed the Red Bluff Police Department had arrived so she went out to let the officer know the dogs were friendly. Ball said the officer stayed in his patrol car and corralled the dogs and told her animal control was on their way.
Ball said after speaking with the officer, she turned around to walk back to her home and that's when she heard the gunshots. She said she ran towards the officer, screaming for him to stop, as he reloaded his weapon.
Ball said at that point, the second dog was walking away from the officer, not barking or acting in a threatening manner. Ball recalled yelling, "Don't shoot the other dog."
Ball said the officer then turned around and shot the second dog. Ball said the dog then got up and drug himself to one of the neighbor's yard.
Ball posted several photos on Facebook of the event but due to graphic content, we are choosing not to attach them to this article at this time.