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Cops Shot Dog After Wanted Teen Ordered It to Attack, Denver Police Say

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Photos from the scene courtesy of 7News. Additional images, plus a video and more below.
"Many tears were shed tonight...."

Those are the first words in an account from photographer Riley Ralmuto about an incident that took place near 9th and Sheridan last night: Denver police officers shot the dog of a wanted teen after cops say he ordered it to attack. Continue for the rest of Ralmuto's piece, plus additional images, a video and more below.

See also: Two dogs killed by cops in Commerce City, site of two earlier officer-shoots-dog incidents

The area near the scene of the gunplay is captured in the following interactive graphic. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."


View Larger Map

The Denver Police Department's version of what went down is encompassed in a two-part tweet. Note that the intersection is referred to as 8th and Sheridan, but media coverage shows that the house is actually located on the 900 block.

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Here's part one....

...followed by part two:

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As for Ralmuto, who captured a shot of officers carrying away the injured dog that's included in 7News coverage below, he wrote about what he saw on his Websta page. In his words:
Many tears were shed tonight by residents of my neighborhood.

After hearing 5 consecutive gunshots very close to my house, I ran out to my garage to see of I could hear anything that might give me a clue as to what was going on. I began to notice that people were lining the streets, all trying to do the same thing as me -- find out what the heck just happened and who got shot.

Several Denver Police officers reportedly surrounded a house in search of a wanted juvenile male (16). After some argument and aggravation, the boy [allegedly] commanded his Boxer/Rottweiler mix to attack a police officer. The dog [allegedly] obeyed command and was consequently shot 5 times by the cop who was [allegedly] under attack. According to Denver PD, the 16 year old male fled and is still missing. Also according to DPD, the dog (who's name was Rough-houser, I believe) is still alive, but severely injured and "being treated." As I walked around taking photos and talking to onlookers, it became very apparent that this dog was well known and a "family pet...."

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Obviously, police shootings of dogs are controversial, as anyone who's read our coverage about multiple incidents in Commerce City over recent years understands. However, a DPD spokesperson tells 7News that officers in the department are allowed to discharge their weapons at dogs if they feel their lives are in danger

At this writing, the teen suspect, who is reportedly wanted for assault and escape, remains at large. In the meantime, there's been no update about the dog's condition beyond the previous mention that he was alive and receiving treatment after the shooting.

Here's the 7News report.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.


My Voice Nation Help
70 comments
Tanya Tenorio-Rashaad
Tanya Tenorio-Rashaad

If it's true the dog was ordered to attack a police officer it was justified and the owner is to blame.

RD Jones
RD Jones

Did the cops ask for someone to secure the dog prior to approaching the suspect? Dog 101, dipsticks.

Kristen Doty
Kristen Doty

Poor doggy :( Too bad it didn't at least get a nibble on one of em before he was put down..I doubt if the kid trained him to be that loyal if he was so ignorant that he thought sicking his dog on police was a bright idea.

TheyDo
TheyDo

Cops lie. A lot.

Kalei N Rick Troch
Kalei N Rick Troch

So you're telling me you can't defend yourself against a defenseless animal? No wonder the PD is having such problems, must have a bunch of numbskulls like you over there. A kick in the throat would've been better than five overkill shots that led to it death, aggressive breed or not.

John Scruggs
John Scruggs

Cops are cowards who will kill anyone or thing that presents the least threat.

Jordan Wallace
Jordan Wallace

The kid killed the dog when he called it to attack. Not the police

Sean Gronbeck
Sean Gronbeck

The kid should get charged with the death of this poor animal.

Dusty Dotson
Dusty Dotson

Jo Nadani u must not have kids or your an ugly person either way your suggestions show your true maturity level maybe the kid needs some help and guidance SMDH!!

Hot.Sauce
Hot.Sauce

So cops expect citizens to suffer the bites of their K9 attack dogs but cower in trigger-happy fear when they face dogs?

Sounds like citizens would be justified in shooting and killing police K9s under the same rationale.

Gwen Holly
Gwen Holly

Did the dog attack? Sounds like a case of trigger happy cops..... they do what they want. Not a cop hater just a crooked cop hater. Unfortunately more and more are coming out of the woodwork.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

The youth may have been paying attention to the news and knew that there was an excellent chance the police were going to murder him if the officers were bad cops.  How can you tell a good cop from a bad one?  If they kill you for no apparent reason, they just might be a bad cop.

Jo Se Ph
Jo Se Ph

I agree with Stan. Even on the sheeple late night news coverage NO one but the police said he ordered the dog to attack and during the last decade we've been handed more than enough reasons to not trust cops.

Manda Babcock
Manda Babcock

Because they shot them before they had a chance to. Dogs are scary! Calm down, who's the first people you call when you're being attacked? Or robbed? Or have been burglarized? Thats RIGHT! The POLICE! They do more good than bad and people like you are ungrateful! They risk their lives EVERYDAY for jerks like YOU!

Stephen Felt
Stephen Felt

If the dog was ordered to attack and was attacking then it was justified. The death ought to be added to his criminal charges.

Michael Price
Michael Price

They quit issuing pepper spray or mace to DPD or what?

Jon Ackelson
Jon Ackelson

To answer this I need to know if the dog had a gun?

Mark Leiby
Mark Leiby

Pistol whipping a dog on the nose while it's running full on at you, ready to kill you? -What could possibly go wrong?!

Kalei N Rick Troch
Kalei N Rick Troch

My motto is if the pants are too big for the britches go home, tell me how not pistol whipping the dog in the nose wouldn't have sufficed? A stray bullet could've hit an innocent bystander and they would've felt real stupid then, wouldn't they?

Kalei N Rick Troch
Kalei N Rick Troch

Value of life is so expendable to you people it's pathetic. If the DPD had the situation so under control tell me how 5 shots were effective and how the teen had time to even assemble his dog for an attack? This is reckless, you don't need the whole PD to take down one kid and if you do it because you guys are scared because of the way you conduct yourself, everybody wants to kill you.

Chris Lewis
Chris Lewis

There are always less dangerous options, cops just enjoy killing things!

Jo Nadani
Jo Nadani

Any punk-ass thug who would use his dog in a situation like this, deserves the outcome. The teen should be charged , and labeled as a 'habitual fucktard'...

Tracy King
Tracy King

The dog will be fine, they said. Shame on the kid!

Erico Marcos Gonzalez
Erico Marcos Gonzalez

Megan Mulligan the difference between Denver and LA. I that happened in LA, there would have been riots and death threats against the PD ;)

Brett Wertman
Brett Wertman

Why can't cop carry a tranquilizer gun or use a taser?

Megan Mulligan
Megan Mulligan

If someone ordered the dog to attack you, what would you do? I don't agree with a lot of excessive force and the like that has been going on, but also think about the danger and requirements of being a police officer.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... easier to just KILL KILL KILL!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Cops are homicidal cowardly scum.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

So you're saying that the kid pulled the trigger?  The kid may have read the news about all the innocent people that have recently been wrongly killed by trigger happy bad cops.  I feel sorry for the good cops, having the bad cops dirtying the reputation of law enforcement. 

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Yeah, otherwise what is the purpose for having death squads?

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

I agree, you are frightened.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Why use non-lethal methods when a bad cop can just do what they want and KILL.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Because then they don't get to kill.


Hot.Sauce
Hot.Sauce

So if a cop ordered his K9 to attack you, you'd shoot and kill it?

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@fishingblues @muhutdafuga Same boring crap, fishingforyounghairlessboys.  Proof you haven't had a thought in some time.


So, hairless, explain how killing innocent people makes a cop anything but a bad cop.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@Hot.Sauce The good cops I've known don't want to kill.  I guess that's part of how I define a good cop.

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