Protest planned on July 6 at Hawthorne Police Department to support Leon and Max

July 5, 2013

A peaceful protest fox Max, the 2-year-old Rottweiler killed on June 30 by Hawthorne Police officer Jeffrey Salmon, is set for July 6.

According to a July 5 Facebook post set up on the Justice for Max the Rottweiler Murdered by Hawthorne Police page, the protest will take place on Saturday at the Hawthorne Police Department from 8a.m.-2p.m. The Facebook post states the purpose of the protest.

“America needs to take a stand against Police Brutality! Officer Jeffrey Salmon needs to be terminated from Hawthorne Police Department. He also should be charged with Animal Cruelty, Excessive Force, and Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress! Sign this petition to take a stand for Max, the dog who Jeffrey Salmon shot and killed for no reason!”

Brian Ingham, a Los Angeles resident responsible for organizing the rally, said attendees will advocate for the firing of Officer Salmon and that department officers be trained to ensure a similar accident from happening again.

Ingham believes the officer who killed Max should lose his badge, and also be held responsible for violating California law by improperly firing his weapon. Brian told the Daily Breeze

“I have never heard of an officer being killed by a dog … so why is he even reaching for his gun.“The dog was retreating when the first shot was fired and then three more shots are fired in a neighborhood full of onlookers and children — that is a negligent discharge of a weapon.”

Briann, this writer would like to educate you on the number of dogs killed by police.

For those who have accused me of being biased on the subject of dogs shot by police, please take a few moments to look over the list of more than 70 cases I’ve covered.

I passed biased months ago. Now I consider myself determined to educate the public, as well as the police, because the almost every day occurrence of police killing family dogs has to stop.

Video taken at the June 30 killing of Max, the dog belonging to Leon Rosby, went viral, getting more than 4 million hits. Anger and disbelief soon escalated to threats being made against several members of the Hawthorne Police department.

The Hawthorne Police Department is planning to have a visible presence at the protest to ensure the demonstration remains peaceful. In an interview with Daily Breeze, Hawthorne spokesman Lt. Scott Swain stated

“We’re putting together an operations plan that will allow the group to safely assemble and exercise their First Amendment rights.”

More than allowing a peaceful demonstration needs to be allowed. The Hawthorne Police Department needs to show the public that training will soon be provided to all officers to prevent another family dog from being killed.

No one is asking police to put themselves at risk for a dog attack. Only that shooting a dog should be a last resort rather than a first defense.

For those attending the demonstration on July 6, please keep the protest peaceful. Only with clear heads and orderly protests can animal advocates bring about a change in how police handle what officers perceive as dangerous dogs.

To become violent at such an event would only bring us down to their level, and accomplish nothing.

Leon, those who have followed your tragic story from the beginning but can’t attend stand by you in spirit.

And Max, know that you didn’t die in vain. Justice will be served in your senseless death.

http://www.mercurynews.com/news/ci_23607585/rally-protest-dog-shooting-s…

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