Animal purposely run over, shot in Collingwood; resident believes animal his dog
Chris Herhalt, CP24.com
Published Tuesday, October 20, 2015 3:49PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 20, 2015 9:39PM EDT
Collingwood residents are demanding answers after a video surfaced showing an animal being run over and then shot by someone driving an OPP vehicle Monday night.
Police responded to a call for someone who reported seeing a large coyote in the area of Seventh Street, between Walnut and Oak streets, sometime around 9:30 p.m.
In a news release issued Tuesday, police said that “for the safety of the community police had to put down this animal.”
In a video clip filmed by Kelly O’Neil shown to CP24, a police vehicle is seen running over the animal, continuing down the street, turning around and running over the animal again.
In a second clip, a police cruiser is seen and a single gunshot can be heard.
But one resident says he believes it wasn’t a dangerous coyote that was killed but rather his deaf and blind dog.
The man, who identified himself only as Scott, told CTV News his dog likely became disoriented by the weather Monday evening, which blew a gate open on his yard.
O’Neil told CTV News the animal was near her front door when police arrived. The OPP officer allegedly nudged the animal with his vehicle’s bumper. It would not move.
Scott said that because his dog cannot hear or see, it likely would not have responded when the officer nudged it with the bumper of his cruiser.
Sarah Leggett, another witness to the incident, told CTV News the officer later got out of his cruiser and shot the animal once.
Leggett and O’Neil said they are concerned with how police deal with animals, especially in residential areas containing children.
Leggett said a van arrived later and the animal was taken away. Scott said he has not yet been allowed to see the animal’s remains, which are in the care of animal control.
An officer was sent to the area to deal with the animal, which was “aggressive and possibly rabid,” Collingwood OPP said in Tuesday’s release.
“Due to the danger this animal posed to both people and other animals and for the safety of the community, police had to put down this animal.”
OPP Acting Sgt. Lynda Cranney said police are unable to confirm whether the animal was a dog, and will be incorporating witness statements, video, the officer’s firearm discharge report and other information into a detailed investigation into the incident.
“The OPP is looking into the circumstances surrounding the video and remains committed to the humane destruction of wildlife when it is a threat to public safety.”
In a well-publicized pursuit in Newmarket on June 1, York Regional Police officers pursued, corralled and later shot a bear that was roaming through backyards in a residential area.
Police said they shot the bear during that incident because they could no longer keep the bear stuck in one place while they waited for Ministry of Natural Resources staff equipped with tranquilizers to arrive.