City of Atlanta police officer cleared in November shooting death of family dog

March 25, 2014

Last November, a dog in Atlanta was killed by a City of Atlanta Police Department officer. According to their Facebook: Justice for Jane Our Family Dog page, the family learned last week that the officer involved has been cleared of any wrongdoing.

After an Internal Affairs investigation, Investigator Art Nixon along with his supervisors, ruled Officer Brian Carswell of the City of Atlanta Police Department completely justified in murdering Jane in her fenced-in front yard on a quiet Sunday morning.

This tragic story began November 10, 2013, when the family of slain pit bull Jane, Matthew and Kelley Rodriguez, was saying goodbye to relatives visiting them from North Carolina.

During the excitement of packing, an 11-year-old girl accidentally dialed 911. Emergency dispatch called the family back, and the niece confirmed it had been an accidental call. An hour later police arrived at the house, where they knocked once without identifying themselves.

Kelley was nursing her three-month-old baby upstairs, and thought the visiting family had returned to pick up an item perhaps missed during their packing. The family dogs, Jane and Lucy, were lying with her on the bed. Kelley shouted that she was coming to the door, and when she opened the door leading outside, the dogs ran out.

At the time, the City of Atlanta police officers had their backs turned, but quickly turned around and drew their weapons. Officer Brian Carswell allegedly shot Jane from the gate, while the dog was on the steps of the home, several feet away.

Another officer had his weapon aimed at Lucy. If not for the fast thinking of Kelley, Lucy, too would have been executed. Kelley quickly picked Lucy up, where she carried the surviving dog upstairs, where she feared for the safety of her family.

“I ran up the stairs to get my infant son as I was terrified, and from the upstairs balcony I started to yell, You killed my dog! Why did you come here to kill my dog!!!??? I couldn’t believe what was happening!”

Both dogs were rescues, and very much loved by family and neighbors alike.

These neighbors, who all knew Jane and Lucy, gathered outside the yard in disbelief. To make matters worse, the officers wouldn’t allow anyone to come near Jane, not even to transport her for emergency treatment.

It wasn’t until more officer’s arrived that Kelley was able to give permission to a neighbor to take Jane to a vet. By then it was too late.

Kelley couldn’t even be with her dog as she took her last breath. She had to remain with her infant but was able to contact Matthew, who was on a charity bike ride at the time. Jane died from her injuries.

“I cannot express what we feel. We keep playing this over and over. There was no reason that the Officer had to kill Jane. She was a friendly dog, everyone loved her, and she did not give him any reason to feel threatened.”

Justice for Jane didn’t happen with the internal investigation. The Rodriguez will now join the families of other dogs slain by police and spread the word about just how often a family dog is murdered by police.

Jane was shot by police in her own yard, while police officers were at the gate, then denied emergency veterinary care until it was too late.

This article was based on information obtained on the Facebook: withJustice for Jane Our Family Dog page. Police department members who witnessed this tragedy are welcome to commontheir version of the shooting.





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