Robby King is grieving over the loss of his best friend, Luke.
Luke, a 6-year-old chocolate Lab, was shot by police when Cobb officers reported to King's home in Smyrna after he accidentally set off a burglar alarm, Channel 2 Action News reports. King now plans to file a complaint against the Cobb County Police Department.
King said he was in a rush to get to the hospital to see the birth of his first grandchild when he accidentally triggered his home alarm. He couldn't remember his password, so he waited in front of his home for the police to arrive.
Unfortunately, the police decided to come through the backdoor, causing Luke to start barking at them. The dog then reportedly chased the officers into the back yard.
"I heard 'pop, pop' and I screamed out, 'Oh, God please don't shoot my dog,' and walked to the door and he's just laying there gasping for breath," King told Channel 2. "I had to watch him bleed to death and gasp for air, and they just stood there looking at me like I was stupid."
King says that the dog in no way attacked or bit the officers. According to the Cobb Police Department, the officers followed protocol and the case is closed. King contends that officers need more training about how to deal with animals. He also plans on filing a complaint against the department.
King could sue the officers and possibly the department for damages related to the cost of the dog, his pain and suffering, and emotional trauma caused by the incident. He would have to show that the officers were negligent in shooting and killing the dog. King would likely argue that the officers had a duty to handle the situation in a peaceful manner and that by killing the dog they breached that duty.
However, King would probably have an uphill battle. The officers would likely claim that they are protected by qualified immunity, a doctrine that shields public officers from liability for violating the rights of others.
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