Baldwin Deputy Shoots, Kills Family Pet

Deputy shoots dog
Beware of Dog sign posted just inside gate of the Silverhill home.

The photo’s of the aftermath of an encounter between a pit bull and a sheriff’s deputy speak for themselves. The dog’s owner Terry Tigart still wants to know why. “What did you need that was so important that my dog had to get shot?”

“The sheriff’s department didn’t go out there to shoot a dog,” responds Capt. Steve Arthur, “We went out there to serve a civil document that she and her ex-partner were involved with.”

A former military K-9 officer, the deputy made phone calls to the house before making the 50-yard walk to the front door. The pit bull came from inside the house. The deputy retreated and gave commands to the dog. “He continued to retreat towards the gate as best he could,” says Arthur. “The dog was still aggressive coming at him and at that point he had no choice but to protect himself and he did fire three rounds and struck the dog and the dog eventually died in the front yard.”

Tigart says the signs were all there starting with the front gate that was closed and latched. A ‘Beware of Dog’ sign on the utility pole just past the front gate and then on the front porch and an open doggie door. “He should have approached this differently. If he was trained in that manner that’s what kind of what bothers me the most. He knew there was a dog on premise. He’s trained in K-9s and she had to die.”

“The officer is extremely distraught. Obviously a dog lover and very upset that this had to happen but, once again he was protecting himself from this pit bull.”

Tigart rescued the pit bull she called “Sage” five years ago. She had been used as a bait dog in a dogfighting ring. The sheriff’s office is investigating the shooting.

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