Minneapolis Police Department Cop Shoots Tail Wagging Dog: More Counsel On Learning About Animals

BY Herschel Smith
6 years, 10 months ago

NY Post:

A Minneapolis homeowner demanded to know why a cop responding to a burglary call shot her two dogs at point-blank range — after one approached wagging his tail.

Surveillance video shows the unidentified officer with the Minneapolis Police Department walking backwards in a back yard with his gun drawn when a Staffordshire terrier — named Ciroc — walks toward him wagging his tail Saturday night. The cop suddenly fires his pistol, hitting the dog in the jaw before the animal runs off.

“He was wagging his tail,” the dogs’ owner, Jennifer LeMay, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “My dog wasn’t even moving, lunging toward him or anything.”

Just as Ciroc is shot, a second Staffordshire terrier named Rocko darts into the frame, prompting the cop to fire again, striking the dog in the side, face and shoulder before the officer calmly hops a 7-foot wooden fence out of the yard.

The dogs survived, but LeMay says the family is suddenly overwhelmed by the vet bills after the shooting. Ciroc is back home after a $900 vet bill, but still needs up to $7,000 in surgeries at the University of Minnesota. Rocko, meanwhile, returned home late Sunday. Both dogs are emotional support animals prescribed by a doctor for LeMay’s sons, who have severe anxiety, she said.

“My dogs were doing their job on my property,” she told the Star Tribune. “We have a right to be safe in our yard.”

I’ve watched the video.  I’ll embed it below (sometimes that slows page loading).

I know dogs.  This dog was only moderately interested in the goings-on, and was absolutely no danger to anyone.  The cop should be arrested and charged with cruelty to animals and spend time in prison.  I feel compelled to repeat the counsel I’ve given before concerning LEOs and dogs.  First, as to general rules.

Turning now to the dog, there is no moral or legal requirement for expecting me to own beasts that roll over and play dead when a cop comes around. That isn’t what good dogs do. People have dogs in part for self defense. I strongly suspect that the dog wasn’t a danger to the neighbors, and like most dogs, they know the neighbors and are gentle with them, or at least not a mortal danger.

My own 90 pound Doberman can jump a six foot fence, and when threatened (I’ve witnessed it before), she never backs down, but goes after the threat, trips the threat from behind with her gigantic paws, gets underneath the threat, and bites for the neck / thoracic region to choke air. Fortunately when it has been other animals uncommon to the area I stop her since she obey my voice commands immediately.

She is also such a “lovey” dog she wants to climb up in the lap of any neighbor who comes by. Cops are not neighbors. Cops are foreign to the area. Dogs interpret cops as a threat, and sometimes they are right. There is no way to distinguish between cops and anyone else. Dogs don’t do calculus.

Turning now to the cops, they had no intrinsic right to be on another man’s property. Judges may say so, or state regulation may say so, but it just isn’t justifiable morally. No one was being killed or kidnapped. This was a call for loud music.

I have had two exchanges with cops over the last decade that I can recall. Once they wanted to enter my home (not for me, but to discuss someone else), and I mentioned that they were welcome but I should restrain my dog. They said, “great idea – we’ve had some instances of bad interactions and the chief wants us to retreat and let people restrain their dogs.” The second time, a cop wanted my help with someone and Heidi – my dog – happened to be loose and in the driveway. He approached on the road, but didn’t venture too far and stayed 20 or 30 yards away and called for me. I put Heidi up and obliged.

If I had to list a few pointers for cops the list would go something like this:

1. Do not approach another man’s property assuming you have a right to be there. Ask permission first. Get people to restrain their beasts.
2. Assume every man is armed.
3. Assume every home has a big dog.
4. Unholster your weapon only as a last resort.
5. Do not waste your time making stupid stops. Stopping someone for a broken running light is a stupid stop when you can be shutting down gang activity. There is another regulatory scheme to ensure that the broken running light gets fixed, i.e., car inspection. Be loath to interact with men when they are in a confined space such as a car or truck. You can’t tell what they are doing, and they can’t tell what you are doing. Unless you are an outstanding communicator, your commands are likely to be misunderstood or misinterpreted, or worse yet, incomplete and unclear or even contradictory like in the case of Castile (show me your ID but don’t move).
6. Most dogs are not “pure bred killers.” Most dogs take on the personality of their owner and only want to protect their owner. Understand this. Work with it, not against it. Use it to your advantage. Learn to work with animals, farm animals included. Train animals if you need to in order to gain this experience.

Next, I’ll turn to animals themselves and what LEOs should know.  I only have to do this because men won’t be men and train their sons to handle animals.  Sadly, in the main this is missing from American culture today, and America treats animals more and more like Muslims treat animals.  I consider Muslim treatment of dogs and other animals to be cowardly and immoral, backward and even barbaric.

I have fallen off, been thrown off, bitten, run over, kicked, and just about anything that can happen on or around a horse.  I have ridden horses all day long, and I do mean all … day … long, and gotten on to do it again the next day.  And the next day.  And the next day.  I have fed them, herded them, doctored them, and assisted them to mate.  If you’ve never witnessed horses mating first hand (and I’m not talking about watching the Discovery Channel), it can be a violent affair.  I’ve ridden with saddles and then also (in my much younger years) bareback over mountain tops along narrow trails while running the herd).  The hardest ride was bareback and (on a dare) without a bridle, only the halter.

From the age of fourteen and beyond into my early twenties, I worked weekends and summers at a Christian camp above Marietta, South Carolina named Awanita Valley (and Awanita Ranch in Traveler’s Rest).  We trained and trail rode horses, fed them and cared for them, hiked the trails and cleared them of snakes and yellow jacket nests (have you ever been on a horse when it came up on a yellow jacket nest?).

When we weren’t doing that, we were cutting wood, hauling supplies, digging ditches, and baling hay.  My boys did the same thing, and Daniel later (before the Marine Corps) worked for Joey Macrae in Anderson, South Carolina, an extraordinary professional horseman, breaking and training horses.  I have ridden in the rain, blazing sun, and snow.  I have seen my son Joshua and his horse buried up to his thighs in snow, and watched him ride the horse up from sinking in the drift and stay on him while keeping the horse and him safe.

Why is all (or any) of this important?  Because as I tried to convey in my earlier post, it is critical to have an understanding and mastery over animals, especially if what we think will happen in America really happens.  And Mountain Guerrilla is right about logistics too.  But I’m not so sure that the Army was the first to field this idea.  See my article on Marines and Mules.  The Small Wars Journal had discussion on the importance of animals to logistics long ago.

The problem is that the Marine Corps has forgotten the lessons, and I’m afraid that the Army will never really take them to heart.  The modern U.S. military is techno-weighted down, with gadgetry, doohickeys, and reliance on constant logistics.  The so-called big dog is a symptom of this sickness, as is the huge budget for DARPA every year.  Truthfully, I think this is all related to the effete pressure for gender neutrality in the military.

But don’t you forget these lessons.  Plan ahead.  Learn how to make fire, how to purify water, how to fight, how to make your way around terrain, and how to navigate with maps and a compass (rather than using GPS like the liar Marine Corps officer candidates who were found out during officer’s school).

And learn animals.  Your life will be better for it.  This goes for cops too.

For LEOs (and all other men), learn to doctor animals.  Learn their anatomy.  Learn the necessity of voice inflection and timbre.  Learn voice commands.  Learn how the movement of a shoulder one way or the other can communicate things to animals.  Learn what to do with your eyes.

If you are a LEO and your father was a putz and didn’t teach you any of these things, then go to a farm and volunteer your time in order to learn animals.  They are much more predictable than men and sometimes much better company.  Your life will be enriched for it.

Not that any LEOs will take this to heart.  Then again, from the cowardly pussies like you witnessed in the video above, we can move to the criminally pathological like we have seen in Buffalo and now in Detroit.

Two Detroit residents filed a civil rights lawsuit against the Detroit Police Department Wednesday, alleging that several police officers needlessly and maliciously shot their three dogs during a marijuana raid.

Kenneth Savage and Ashley Franklin say that on July 22, 2016, Detroit police raided their house and found the dogs in a back yard bounded by an eight-foot-tall fence. The officers refused to let Savage and Franklin retrieve the dogs and, instead, shot them.

The reason? Officers found several potted marijuana plants in the backyard Savage and Franklin contend were there legally.

The suit is now the third active civil rights action against the Detroit Police Department for killing dogs during marijuana raids. A Reason investigation last year found that the Detroit Police Department’s Major Violators Unit, which conducts hundreds of drug raids a year in the city, had a nasty habit of leaving dead dogs in its wake. One officer had killed 69 dogs over the course of his career, public records obtained by Reason showed.

According to a search warrant affidavit, a Detroit police officer, while investigating an unrelated matter, observed several marijuana plants outdoors at the home of Savage, Franklin, and their son.

Two days later, eight Detroit police officers arrived at the house. Police were aware Savage and Franklin had a permit to grow medical marijuana, but the plants were in violation because they were visible outside, the search warrant affidavit said.

When Franklin showed police her marijuana paperwork and demanded to see a search warrant, an officer responded, “If you keep asking for a warrant, we are gonna kill those dogs and call child protective services to pick up your kid,” the lawsuit says.

Officers detained Franklin and searched the house, but could not get to the marijuana plants because of the dogs. They initially called animal control but decided to destroy the animals, the lawsuit says. Officers shot and killed one dog through the fence, broke into the backyard enclosure, and fatally shot the other two. Animal control arrived ten minutes later.

There is only one solution to the criminally pathological like this, and retraining isn’t it.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks


  1. On July 11, 2017 at 12:12 am, James said:

    Damn that is so offensive to watch.

    No sentient being who has been on earth more that a week could possibly surmise that the dog was a threat.

  2. On July 11, 2017 at 5:35 am, Francis Porretto said:

    It’s beginning to look as if a fair percentage of LEOs roam around looking for an excuse to shoot civilians’ pets.

  3. On July 11, 2017 at 6:47 am, Heywood J said:

    There is a sickness in the LE community. They want to fire their weapons so darn bad, they are looking for reasons to do it. My dog is part of my family. I pity the LE officer that, without cause, harms a member of my family!

  4. On July 11, 2017 at 8:10 am, Fred said:

    What a happy and cute family dog, and a service animal as well. LE’s are trained to kill you and your children and your property so that they go home safe. If every living thing gets killed in a 2 mile radius, all that matters is that the cops go home at the end their shift.

    I think an avanue of resolution to correct this training is a national org that pools money and files suite against the departments where the dog killing happens. Asking your militerized PD to be less of a thugish gang and to be more freindly is clearly a not working.

  5. On July 11, 2017 at 11:22 am, Douglas Mortimer said:

    As a dog owner, this is one of my biggest fears. My dog is a member of my family, not just a pet. All it takes for a situation like this is for the police to go on a call and get an address wrong, it has happened before. I honestly can’t say how I’d react, but it sure wouldn’t be pretty.

    But hey, screw it. If cops can get away with killing librarians because they loaded incorrect ammunition into their firearms, they can get away with anything. And I’m not anti-cop, I’m anti corrupt cop and anti stupid cop. I want police who are police officers for the right reasons, and the ones who aren’t should be shunned and cast off like excess baggage, not protected by bad leadership.

    I got rear-ended once at a traffic light and the LEO who showed up was one of the coolest and most amazing people I had ever met. And then years after when my car was the victim of a hit and run I called the local PD to report it and you would have though that the LEO on the other end of the was a complete jerk and I was just bugging him on a quiet Sunday afternoon…

    Your home, your property is supposed to be yours.

  6. On July 11, 2017 at 12:28 pm, Jack Crabb said:

    I wonder if Dirk Williams is going to try to justify this one…

  7. On July 11, 2017 at 9:04 pm, Ned said:

    Jack – I was kinda wondering the same thing.

  8. On July 11, 2017 at 9:10 pm, Ned said:

    It occurs to me that the only other group that treats animals this badly are Moslems. So now we apparently have to place many LEO’s in the same category.

    Oh, and musloids will also murder your wife and daughters in order to make it home safely.

  9. On July 12, 2017 at 9:24 am, Dirk Williams said:

    Hey Jack Crabb, I’m sensing you don’t like the police. Imagine that, did you get a ticket you didn’t deserve, did you run your soup koolers to a cop, when you should have been carefully listening to their directions/instructions. Or, are you just entitled and above the law.?

    As for these dogs getting shot. This is BS, I agree with the assessment, this cop should be fired jailed and sued for the trauma he put this family thru. Their is no justification in this applicatio, for shooting these dogs.

    To be fair, I’m not real pro cop, their’s just to much bullshit being pulled by LEO’s these days, without consequence. I’ve been retired for roughly 7/8 years. At the end of my tour, I was noticing stuff happening that didn’t fit.

    I was witnessing the militarization, of law enforcement. I didn’t like it.

    For me the change came when SCOTUS, specifically Scalia, wrote basically what is the definition of the duties of law enforcement.

    In my words their.
    .1 to investigate crimes.
    2. To arrest criminals.
    3. To protect the infastructure! Reread this one. I read and understand it to say, protect govt, and elected officials, NOT” We the People”. Bullshit!

    What SCOTUS also confirmed was that LEO’s had zero duties to protect. Reread this one.

    I quite writing tickets, I focused on property crimes specifically, burglaries, catching burglars. Nothing more personal then some shitbag jacking your stuff out of your castle.

    So My new friend Jack Crabb, I’m happy to enlighten you as to how it works. Understand I likely don’t agree with mostly how it works, not because of the cops.

    But because of dumb fuck legislators who introduce even more and more stupid rules every legislative session, generally for special interest groups.

    Jack sincerely I see exactly what your seeing, like you I know we have allowed govt, to much power.

    We have nobody to blame except ourselves.

    That was 12 ish years into my career, and I realized I was caught in the trap.

  10. On July 12, 2017 at 9:44 am, Herschel Smith said:


    To be fair to Scalia, it’s never been the case that police were there to protect and serve. That’s not their job, witness lower court rulings (multiple) rejecting lawsuits when the police didn’t get their fast enough or for other reasons.

    The real problem is the combination of this (^ above ^) with a rejection of second amendment rights along with the notion that cops can go anywhere and do anything.

  11. On July 12, 2017 at 2:18 pm, Jack Crabb said:

    @ Dirk –

    You are correct – I don’t like the police. And it’s not for any of the reasons you listed. I’m not entitled and above the law, I’m just a peaceable citizen (I refuse to use the term law abiding any more) that wants to be left the fuck alone from any government interference.

    We are no longer a society with a Rule of Law. Nor are we any longer a Constitutional Republic. And, yes, one has a lot to do with the other.

    The term Law Enforcement Officer is a symptom of what is wrong. A true Peace Officer and Constitutional Sheriffs are what this once-great country requires.

    And by the way, I absolutely agree with your statements: “But because of dumb fuck legislators who introduce even more and more stupid rules every legislative session, generally for special interest groups… I know we have allowed govt, to much power. We have nobody to blame except ourselves.”

    So, it appears we have a lot more in common than we do not in common.

    (But I still disagree with your position on the last dog shooting.)

  12. On July 12, 2017 at 3:05 pm, Jim Wiseman said:

    My dog is “property.” A “K9” is considered a police officer, and is therefore worth more than not only my dog, but me as well.

  13. On July 12, 2017 at 3:54 pm, Jimmy the Saint said:

    “A Minneapolis homeowner demanded to know why a cop responding to a burglary call shot her two dogs at point-blank range — after one approached wagging his tail.”

    Because he could, and he felt like doing it.

  14. On July 12, 2017 at 4:03 pm, Dirk said:

    Guys, it took me retiring and studying everything I could to learn why my last 10 years was a shit show. Why enforcement had slid to a new low. I’m not the enemy, I see what your saying.

    I would move on to another site if I thought you guys were wrong. I’m not loyal to law enforcement, I am low altitude to the constitution and the Bill of Rights, our founding documents.

    Are we all going to see life differently, I sure hope so. I’m here to learn sometimes teach, and share perhaps another view. That we disagree on things in my oppinion makes for a more honest Frank oppertunity for all.

    Regarding the first dog incident, I agree it’s screwed up, could have perhaps been handled differently. I wasn’t saying your wrong, at least I don’t think that was my point, just that sometimes for the street cop, like the solider, options are limited.

    This last dog shooting was so far out their, that shitbag, should have been fired arrested and upon conviction jailed. If asked I would suggest this family file a complaint with the state licensing authority standards and training, the state DOJ, the state police and the city or county which this guy didn’t work for.

    Demand criminal charges, take it to the media, float the tape, build viewership for consensuous on poorly trained officers.

    Lastly one needs to make a conscious choice, call 911……. Not call 911. At my residence we don’t call the police, we address the issue. I understand the consequence of my choice.

    DONT TALK TO THE POLICE, we each have a right to constitutional protections to , no self incrimination in encounters, brief or focused. Demand your attorney be present, and ask if your free to depart. And understand he triggers for Miranda warnings.

    Lastly, if confronted record it, memorialize the contact immediately after the encounter ends. Articulate exactly what was said, don’t generalize any of it.

    Lastly ask exactly what the reason for this contact is.

    I was once stopped by the popo, and detained, cuz a guy robbed a bank 20 miles away and he had a beard. I happened to have a beard, ” was working dope” I lit this fucker up. His Proboable cause for this stop was I had a beard.

    I was shocked I told him he better arrest me, or I was out of their. I drove away, right to his agency, where I spoke with the watch commander about this dip shits actions
    I did file a written complaint. Incidently i did not tell them I was a Deputy.

    Question authority, as a school resource officer here in Klamath falls I use to tell the kids that in my classroom presentations, after they told me the road dogs were stopping them and tossing their cars without permission, or PC.

    Hope this helps understand some stuff.


  15. On July 13, 2017 at 5:08 pm, Randolph Scott said:

    This “One officer had killed 69 dogs over the course of his career” motherfucker needs to be tracked down by someone and killed on the spot no matter where he is, parked in his car, in church, attending his son’s bar mitzvah, walking down the street, eating in a restaurant, the fucking bastard needs a bullet in his head.

    If anyone with this record does this to my dog I will do this with total disregard to any consequences.

  16. On July 14, 2017 at 10:57 am, Dan said:

    Anyone comes on my property and shoots my Dogs. I don’t care who it is. That person will be met with a dear slug. I will make sure that person is dead.

  17. On July 14, 2017 at 3:28 pm, DAN III said:

    Randolph Scott,

    My beloved hound is just not “a dog”. Ne is a wonderful, loving creature whose loyalty to tne family is unquestjonable. An attack on one’s hound is an atfack on one’s family.

    Bless you Randolph.

  18. On July 15, 2017 at 7:00 am, Dan said:

    When you seek, screen for and hire bullys and sociopaths because they will FOLLOW ORDERS WITHOUT QUESTION and impose the will of the politically connected on citizens REGARDLESS of right, wrong, good, bad, evil or morality because they get a paycheck for doing that this is the type of conduct YOU WILL ALWAYS GET. The job draws power hungry sociopathic sickos….the kind that fry ants with magnifying glasses, the kind that pulls wings from flies….THE KIND THAT MURDER PETS FOR FUN.

    And the ‘system’ is NEVER going to stop this kind of conduct for two reasons. One is you do NOT put too many constraints on your schutzstaffel…..your hired thugs. Doing so invites the possibility that the
    bodyguards become the executioner ala Caligula. The second reason is
    those in power WANT their hired muscle to do nasty shit like this for a very
    simple reason. They want the sheeple they seek to RULE to understand that the hired help are perfectly willing to murder the family dog….and they are JUST AS WILLING to MURDER YOU. So TOE THE EFFING LINE OR ELSE.

  19. On July 17, 2017 at 8:21 am, StBernardnot said:

    Francis @ 5:30am on the 11th (I’m a little late) cops are also “civilians”. That being said, a pig kicked at my little 14 lb. mutt who was sniffing his spit shined shoes. I warned him that it would be a bad day if he touched my dog. I’m a big guy & quite rowdy (biker) & a Viet Nam Marine. I was hoping at that point the dog would have lifted his leg & pissed all over his leg. No such luck.

  20. On May 3, 2018 at 11:41 pm, Georgiaboy61 said:

    As University of Tennessee Law Professor Glenn Reynolds has suggested in the wake of previous such incidents, it is time to repeal sovereign immunity for police officers and the agencies for which they work.

    Under the present system, the “Blue Wall” of silence protects bad and incompetent cops, and since the taxpayer is footing the bill to defend the officer and agency in question, neither the alleged offender or his department really have any skin in the game.

    In especially egregious cases, an officer may be fired or even criminally-charged, but most of the time, that does not happen.

    Even if a given department, agency or officer loses a lawsuit, the taxpayers foot the bill anyway and the police union takes care of the officer – who is often simply suspended with pay until the bad PR heat dies down and the news cycle moves on to something else.

    If a given officer knew that his livelihood and pension were on the line, as well as the fiduciary health of his employer, perhaps he might be more-circumspect in his behavior. If these were insufficient to prompt more-professional behavior, then the prospect of felony charges and prison might do the trick.

    There would be a strong incentive for the LE community to get rid of the bad apples on their own, before the fact of such outrageous and unfortunate misuses of police powers.

  21. On May 4, 2018 at 6:33 am, JohnMc said:


    I would add that LEOs should be required to personally carry occupational liability insurance. If the city/county wants to pick up the tab, ok. But if the insurance company deems the insured an excessive risk and does not renew that individual shall be severed from the force. Multiple occupations are required by law to do this. Hell we are required to do so just to be able to drive a vehicle. Its one way to weed out the bad ones.

  22. On May 4, 2018 at 8:45 am, SGT.BAG said:

    It is ALOT easier to get away with killing a dog than it is a 40 year old Australian woman.

  23. On May 4, 2018 at 8:50 am, Mark Matis said:

    Your son does not like the appropriate solution.

  24. On May 4, 2018 at 8:59 am, soapweed said:

    Over time Dirk has morphed over time into an ex-statist and I applaud him for that. Every one should be allowed to ‘see the light’ and atone for previously held positions.
    That being said, I love f#### with cops. Just got done with screwing with a Green Bay K9 cop going home from a donut convention somewhere out west here while driving back east on US 24 near Ramah. He was driving like an asshole tailgating locals driving the limit in front of him. Thought he was going to have a brain aneurism. Wish he woulda had one, as he couldn’t touch me.
    Oh and they better never f%%% with my wonderful gentle pooches,
    i.e. Bad day at Blackrock……

  25. On May 4, 2018 at 10:08 am, revjen45 said:

    5. Do not waste your time making stupid stops. Stopping someone for a broken running light is a stupid stop when you can be shutting down gang activity.
    They aren’t called “stupid stops” in the porker lexicon. It’s “pretext stop.”
    As in: “your tail light is out. You don’t do drugs do you? Mind if I have a look? That sounds a lot more benign than “You don’t mind if I snoop through your vehicle and scatter your belongings from Hell the breakfast in case there’s anything I can throw in your face in court.” This would be delivered as a statement rather than a question.

  26. On May 4, 2018 at 7:17 pm, Dirk said:

    To my concerned associates, wanting to know my position. I don’t have one, I wasn’t their. I don’t like it, any more then anybody here. The difference is I’ve walked that path. I’ve shot dogs, I hated it before, while, and afte, I did it.

    I should have shot their pile of shit owners, wouldn’t have lost a second of sleep over capping them. The dogs another story. I grieve over dogs being killed. I mean it triggers my PTSD, big time. In fact I don’t kill anything anymore.

    Like most here, my dogs are pretty much my best friends. I just lost both to old age, this past winter. I sat over their graves for days, me and my dogs. Every morning I look out back to their resting place, and say my prayers.

    No more dogs in my future, I still have a grand dog my son brings over for me three days a week.

    Chip away boys.


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This article is filed under the category(s) Police and was published July 10th, 2017 by Herschel Smith.

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