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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

PA State Police Shoot Family Pet In Yard

Pennsylvania State Police shot a family's fenced-in pet to death Tuesday.Troopers later admitted they weren't supposed to be in that yard in the first place.State troopers were in the neighborhood, trying to serve a warrant on someone. They sent a couple of extra troopers around to guard the back door. Those officers, however, cut through a neighbor's yard, and that's when they came across Sheeba, a very protective family dog, NBC 10's Tim Furlong reported.

"She was doing her job. That's what she does, she protects us," said DiQuan Dill. DiQuan and his five brothers and sisters got the bad news when they got home from school Tuesday that their Belgian shepard was killed in their back yard.

Their mom was there when it happened."I was in there laying down and, all of a sudden, I heard gunfire -- about five or six rounds," Denise Dill said.

But what disturbed the family most was that state police killed Sheeba."When I came to the door, they were actually next door, and I said, 'What's the matter? Who shot my dog?' And he was like, 'Your dog bit me.' I said, 'What are you doing in the yard?' And he said, 'We're looking for this guy over here.' I said, 'Why did you have to shoot the dog?' He said, 'She bit me.' I said, 'Why you didn't just get out of the yard?'"

Denise's fiancée was devastated, and she said the kids were even more upset."She was always happy. I don't know why they did that. She was always joyful, running around, everything," DiQuan said.

The bitten state trooper was recovering from puncture wounds to his hand.A lieutenant at his barracks admitted the trooper should never have cut through the yard in the first place. He told NBC 10 the troopers never saw or heard the dog in the yard but that, either way, troopers are not supposed to cut through private property to serve out a warrant at another house.

"He obviously panicked, you know, and messed up," Dill said.She got business cards from the troopers on scene, and she said one trooper apologized.But an apology can't bring Sheeba back to the kids who grew up with her."We got dog food and everything, and we don't have anyone to give it to. We don't got nothing," Dill said.

State police said they do apologize and will compensate the family for their loss, Furlong reported. The man they came to get was taken into custody on pretty minor charges, Furlong said.

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