December 18, 2014

Elyria
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Lorain police officer says dog charged him before he shot it

LORAIN — A police officer shot and wounded a dog that he contends was charging at him during an arrest.

The incident occurred Sept. 9 when Officer Dario Torres served a domestic violence warrant to Samantha Meade, 27, at her boyfriend’s house on the 3500 block of Oakdale Avenue.

Police said that Torres went to the house after arresting Meade to see if anyone was home who could take care of Meade’s 4-year-old son who was playing outside during the arrest.

When Torres went to the house, two dogs emerged and began to charge at him, according to the police report. One of the dogs, a Coonhound, approached Torres first.

“I fired my weapon once, striking the dog in the rear left leg,” Torres wrote in the police report.

Veterinarian Thomas Wood at the Lorain Animal Clinic examined the dog after the incident, and he said Torres was in error.

The bullet grazed the dog’s face and went through its chest, exiting on the right side of the animal.

“He shot the dog head on,” Wood said.

The clinic was able to treat the dog’s wounds and he made a quick recovery, according to Wood.

Lorain police Lt. Roger Watkins said the erroneous information in the report was an accident, explaining that when Torres saw the dog limping away after the shot, he thought he had hit it in the leg.

Torres declined to comment on the incident.

Animal rights activist Pat Fogo is upset by the shooting itself.

“It was uncalled for, unnecessary and extreme,” Fogo said. “It seems to me that (Lorain police) need more training.”

Contact Anna Merriman at 329-7245 or amerriman@chroniclet.com.