DETROIT (WJBK) - A man received a large settlement in a federal lawsuit against the City of Detroit and an officer for shooting his family dog in 2015.
Dog owner Darryl Lindsay sued the city for killing Babycakes, a female Dogue de Bordeaux, on January 31, 2015. The city awarded him $100,000.
Officers were responding to a call about about an active shooter. Police surrounded Lindsay's home and the suit claims that although the dog was securely tethered to the South side of the plaintiff's home by a 10-foot steel cable leash, Detroit police Officer Darrell Dawson shot the dog.
Police dashboard camera footage obtained through the Freedom of Information Act shows that Dawson approached the dog and while standing just out of the dog's reach, shot her twice in the chest area, the suit claims. The dog died from the gunshot wounds.
"A well-developed body of federal law holds that police unreasonably killing a dog violates the owner's Fourth Amendment rights," said Chris Olson, Lindsay's attorney. "In particular, where the dog does not pose an imminent threat, or the officer is not surprised by the dog and has had time to make alternate plans to control the dog, other than shooting; the shooting of the dog is an unreasonable seizure that violates the Fourth Amendment."
A shooter was never found in the area.