June 27, 2013
A Winston-Salem woman was shot by June 26 by incoming Police Chief Barry Roundtree, FOX8 News reported.
Tamara Whitt was shot in the leg during a call answered by Winston-Salem Police on a dangerous weapon call at 124 North Jackson Avenue at approximately 1:30 p.m. A 911 call had come in that a man was on the porch with a gun drawn on another man.
The two officers responding to the call, Chief Barry Roundtree and Officer Mohammed Khan, parked stationed themselves behind Officer Khan’s patrol car. Tamara, who lives in the area, was chasing after her boxer Lebrone, who had heard the officers and was headed down the driveway toward them.
Chief Roundtree, who later claimed the dog was attacking him, fired one shot from his 40 caliber weapon. Instead of hitting Lebrone, the bullet ricocheted off the pavement, striking Tamara in her left thigh.
Not only did Tamara take a bullet meant for her dog, whom she describes as docile, Chief Roundtree is alleged to have backed away from the victim instead of coming to her aid. In an interview with FOX8 given after Tamera was discharged from a local hospital, Tamara stated
“He did not come to me. He backed away, just backed up and I saw the cell phone come out … he walked across the street over there by that car over there and he was on his phone … and I told the SBI he did not come to me.”
The victim is very upset. Not only about her dog being shot at, but about the officer’s decision to fire his weapon as she was standing right beside her dog. The bullet is still in Tamara’s leg, as doctors say it’s too dangerous to remove.
Roundtree has been placed on administrative leave until an investigation into the incident has been completed by the NC State Bureau of Investigation. He was set to be sworn in on June 30.
Assistant Chief David Clayton is currently acting as Chief of Police until Rountree returns to full duty.
The dog, who was later found injured by Animal Control, is being cared for.
Readers, what do you think of this shooting? This is exactly what those of us who follow dogs shot by police stories have been waiting to happen. This isn’t the first time a bullet has hit an innocent victim, and unfortunately, it’s not likely to be the last.
Your comments are welcome.