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Redmond police confirm officers shot 2 dogs, killing 1, during investigation at homeless camp

Police say dogs behaved aggressively: group says they are friendly

REDMOND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- While investigating the whereabouts of a stolen trailer and contents, Redmond police officers shot two dogs, one fatally, Tuesday night at a large houseless encampment off Northeast 17th Street and Greenwood Avenue.

“I got an urgent phone call from an unhoused community member, pretty distraught, saying the police had shot and killed someone's dog out there,” Companion Animal Medical Project Executive Director Johannah Johnson-Weinberg told NewsChannel 21 Wednesday.

Around 8 p.m. Tuesday, Johnson-Weinberg went to the houseless encampment in response to the caller, whose dog was wounded, but stable.

When she arrived, she saw a small trail of blood and two Redmond officers burying a 1-year-old spayed female pit bull mix.

A 2-year-old spayed female pit bull mix suffered a bullet graze wound.

“She wasn’t bleeding out -- it was certainly a graze, the skin was apart, but it’s a relatively clean wound,” Johnson-Weinberg said.

Police said in a statement Wednesday afternoon that the two dogs were off-leash and behaving aggressively. 

Lt. Jesse Petersen said the officers "were approached by several aggressive off-leash dogs" and confronted by two of them while they were trying to contact the occupants of the houseless camp, near where the reported stolen property was located.

"One of the detectives unsuccessfully attempted to separate himself from the dogs, and fired shots at one of the dogs, which later died," he said.   

A short time later, police say, another off-leash and aggressive dog ran toward a detective, but fled once he shot at it. Its status is currently unknown, police said. Officers stayed on scene and buried the deceased dog for its owner. 

Petersen added, "RPD will conduct a review of the entirety of the incident (from initial call response to conclusion).  Findings will be presented to the captain and chief for review.  The incident will also be presented to the District Attorney’s Office for review per policy."

Having interacted with the dogs involved on many occasions, Johnson-Weinberg said they were friendly.

“We’ve provided care for these pet owners multiple times, so we’re very familiar with not only the owner, but also these dogs,” said Johnson-Weinberg.

She said she spoke with the unhoused woman who lost her dog, and noted how distressed and shaken she was.

“It was very traumatic. Their dogs are their lives,” Johnson-Weinberg said.

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Bola Gbadebo

Bola Gbadebo is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Bola here.

Comments

98 Comments

  1. Do Redmond police have body cams? Would be very interesting to see that video, seems more to the story. Like why were they burying the dog? Seems odd they had a shovel with them.

    1. No, Redmond Police to not have bodycams. They buried it because it would attract vermin and scavengers. Police carry all types of tools. Sometimes they even let them go on ride-alongs.

    2. RPD absolutely has body cams. They were a fairly early adopter – long before Bend (2017-2018-era).

      From their policies:
      305.9 AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS
      Best Practice
      Any officer involved in a shooting or death may be permitted to review available Mobile Audio/Video (MAV), body-worn video, or other video or audio recordings prior to providing a recorded statement or completing reports.

      Officer-Involved Shootings and Deaths
      Upon request, non-law enforcement witnesses who are able to verify their presence and their
      ability to contemporaneously perceive events at the scene of an incident may also be permitted to review available MAV, body-worn video, or other video or audio recordings with the approval of assigned investigators or a supervisor. Any MAV, body-worn and other known video or audio recordings of an incident should not be publicly released during an ongoing investigation without consulting the prosecuting attorney or City Attorney’s Office, as appropriate.

    1. “Terrible at actually protecting and serving the community” Well, snowflake, feel free to do your part at protecting us all….lol. Wow, you are clueless at what that even means. So happy for you that you live under the protection of our Police, and miltary, while expressing your right to question the way they do their jobs.

      1. We all have a right to question how employees of the public do their professional jobs. It a professional job; not a volunteer position to carry sound a badge and a gun with the force of law behind the their actions and requests. Do they deserve professional respect as long as they are behaving professionally? Of course. Is there any reason to avoid question encounters that end poorly? No. It’s a lousy outcome given the reported facts even if they acted reasonably.

        1. That isn’t true, either. There are numerous volunteers who carry a badge and gun and have the authority to enforce the laws. They are reserve officers. Nearly every department in Central Oregon utilizes volunteer reserve officers.

    2. Pedal, as you can pedal yourself and your attitude into the sunset, on behalf of the men and women who we ask to do a job that most couldn’t or wouldn’t I say many thanks. It’s not a matter of if so much as when you’ll be a crime victim yourself. Please keep pedaling – far away.

      1. Yeah, and on behalf of the other 99.999% of the population I say “forget” the po Lice, I don’t need them, I don’t diall 911. They’re nothing but trouble. I have family in Po lice, and they’re also sub-par americans, and their friends are trash. Just because you’re a bootlickin’ back the bluer, your opinion is suspect.

    3. If they were that good at shooting dogs, why did they graze one, and likely completely miss another? If they were good at it, wouldn’t there be three dead dogs, not 1?

      As to the investigation into the stolen goods, I feel like I’m being protected and served.

  2. Here’s a novel thought. If you are “houseless” don’t have a fenced area, and own an aggressive dog, maybe keep it on a leash or contained. I feel bad for the officers who had to make the decision. Great job on recovering the trailer! I have been recreating east of Redmond and been chased several times by aggressive off leash dogs.

      1. Actually there are sanctioned mountain bike trails out there. Homeless camps all along them. Many stories of problems with these people. My coworker hit and killed one of these dogs a few months back with his work truck. Horrible for all involved. Keep your dogs on a leash. Pick up after yourselves. Drive out to 17th and greenwood and have a look for yourself. Then come back to the comment section. Give the police the benefit of doubt. Cops are not the enemy.

    1. Lol. Those dogs were not aggressive, look at the photos and first hand accounts. What makes them seem aggressive is everyone’s misconceptions and judgements of pitbulls. If it were any other breed they would not have shot it.

      1. Take a good look at a picture of Ted Bundy. Everyone said he was a nice guy too. If any other breed was acting aggressively, uncontrolled,and had the physical capacity to maim and kill, I would expect a similar outcome.

      2. Are you saying you were out there at the time of the incident? Do you know these dogs personally and have experience with their behavior? Is it not the law do you have your pets on a leash unless it’s a designated off-leash area? Yes I know people set up camps wherever they want and they tend to think it’s their own property but the reality is it is not! These dogs could very well have been aggressive to people who they felt were intruding on their home and be completely friendly to people they know that’s kind of how that works

  3. Is there bodycam video from the police? Not prejudging, but find it odd that these dogs interacted appropriately with veterinarians and a local pet care volunteer group. Curious what the cameras would show. I am a retired dog trainer.

    1. No. Redmond PD do not wear bodycams. And those packs of feral dogs are well known out there. Many get shot; its only when a cop has to put one down does it make the news.

      1. They should. Story here might be totally on the up and up but given modern technology and practical awareness that hard evidence beats eyewitnesses accounts (even from police) – they shouldn’t expect any more assumed credibility than the rest of us. Bodycams protect honest cops.

        1. I looked up licensed veterinarians in the United States and there does not seem to be one named
          Johannah Johnson-Weinberg. And oddly, that mention in the article is gone as well.

            1. Without providing the folks that rely on this station for their news any info on the correction or deletion? Some might think editing a story only after being called out on it, along with out acknowledging the “error”, so it would appear to a reader viewing the edited article that the original never existed, not only unethical but negligent. A quick count finds over 50 stories in the last 6 months that were corrected. updated and those actions acknowledged under the headline and before the body of the article. It’s not only the lack of transparency that upsets folks, its the “holier than thou” attitude of MSM journalists that has cost the profession much of its credibility. And when on a local level, you get a Moderator that is emotionally attached to the message board they are tasked to moderate; it becomes the farce we enjoy here.

              1. We are ahead of just about every other media outlet at putting an editor’s note atop many local stories with what’s new, changed or corrected.
                Not always. And what’s funny is, that transparency is being attacked as a lack of transparency. Which makes no sense whatsoever.
                Targeting the news you turn to and attack every day is very sad. Most people appreciate what we have. The loud trolls, well, they are what they are.

      2. Why do you keep saying that? Redmond PD absolutely has body cams and a policy which requires they be used. That has been true for at least 4 – 5 years now.

        1. No. Most counties have laws about dogs at large (with exceptions such as working dogs), but nothing specifically about leashes. This whole thing seems out of control. Even my golden retriever will bark at a stranger that approaches the house. Are the Redmond PD saying they will kill it if that happens to them? The self-defense laws for the rest of us are no different than they are for the police. So do I get to kill any dog that barks at me?

      1. Then there’s the Deschutes County At Large ordinance. But mention of that would reveal the transparency of your pathetic attempt to portray the offender as the victim.

  4. Thank you redmond PD. That particular area is getting bad. Having an off leash pit bull is asking for incident. I’m a dog lover but have no use for pit bulls.

  5. Thoroughly tragic. One account I have read says the dogs were fired on from a distance while running away . . . that the officers showed up unannounced and did not reveal the reason for their visit. We definitely need more answers; I hope Redmond PD can furnish.

      1. Good point, and RPD did say that they were trying to contact people at the campsite. But, they weren’t in hot pursuit of anyone and perhaps they could have proceeded a bit more cautiously–maybe withdraw to their cruiser when confronted by the dogs. Not trying to second guess anyone and will await the result of the review by RPD. Missing from this story is the account of the incident by the dogs’ owners; they have issued a statement on social media. I can understand the anguish and grief of the owners; I would think that people living in unhoused conditions–particularly women–might share a more survival-related /mutual aid relationship with their companion animals. Police officers I have encountered seem to be specially fond of dogs; several years ago I organized a local protest over the ODFW’s killing of wolves and the Bend officer who came to the scene expressed sympathy for what we were doing.

    1. Guarantee if it was a Labrador or any other kind of dog they wouldn’t have been shot.
      There are no body cameras so there’s no evidence of what actually happened and everyone knows there will be no accountability for the cop who murdered that dog.

      1. I think you meant to say that with the jellyfish of a DA we have there will be no accountability for the dog owner who allowed there dogs to run loose and uncontrolled, ultimately resulting in their demise. Fortunately the police were armed and able to protect themselves and others from injury by the pack of dogs.

        I do wish they would have used pepper spray, but I was not in their shoes.

  6. Loose dog’s at homeless camp’s that are off leash and acting aggressive will be shot. What an amazing show of neglect and animal irresponsibility, these people are not victim’s but responsible for the death of the dog’s!!

  7. If their dogs are that important to them, they should not be running loose, not only be cause people are around but right now deer are dropping fawns, and dogs can’t resist the chase. Take care of your dog, keep them tied or leashed or under voice control

  8. I’m guessing you were on scene and not in the barko lounger? I’m guessing you here of stories of police driving the neighborhoods,shooting dogs randomly from Barney? Just another day in Redmond?

  9. Sad and unfortunate situation, but I don’t fault the cops at all. Pitbulls, especially in a pack can be life threatening. If you have dogs, they need to be controlled. If you can’t afford to be a responsible owner, don’t be. If you have no place to fence the in, they need to be leashed. I feel bad for the owner, but ultimately it was their responsibility, and they failed.

    https://www.newsweek.com/texas-man-dies-lost-legs-dog-attack-1717565

  10. Dog owners: Keep your dogs contained! Their blood is on your hands, if you don’t.

    Police: The crackle noise from a stun gun is plenty to send dogs running away. No need to kill them, in this story.

  11. More of these kinds of issues will happen as the houseless/homeless population increases. Some deep, investigative reporting could tell us, the public, the amount of resources being spent by LEO at the city, county, state police and other 1st responders dealing with the daily homeless crap. And btw, (‘houseless’ shows up as a misspelled word)

  12. I am just happy the police didn’t hide in their car for an hour while they waited for help. Guess shooting at dogs is much easier than protecting our children. So brave!

    1. Chris, my guess is that you don’t possess the courage or sense of civic responsibility to do the work we expect of our cops. Putting on a uniform and entering into the dark world of criminal behavior takes great bravery. Those that are willing to do so deserve our support. No, they’re not perfect and they do make mistakes, but to take a cheap shot like that makes you look like a Zippo.

      1. Sorry, but when you put on the uniform you then have duties and responsibilities to uphold. The majority of the police (and their unions) do not uphold either of these things. Today, in this country, our police force has become a disgrace. The few good officers left out there are scared to speak up which in turn makes them bad officers. Look at the rate at which they clear crimes! No one could do this poorly and still be employed.

      2. If it takes bravery, why arent they brave? Those who are willing to do so, often have hidden motives, like trying to feel control or power. Like compensating for shortcomings or being bullied as a kid. Why is it 40% of PD commit domestic assault?

  13. No way you can trust the Redmond PD. They are willing to lie about anything for their own personal gain.
    Speaking from personal experience, with a clear record.

    1. Hmm, I had a minority of your choice steal something from me, then deny it. Do I get to say “no way you can trust xxxx people. They will lie about anything for their own personal gain.”

  14. Remember Ruby Ridge started out by the Feds killing the boys Labrador. The kid rightfully shot back in self-defense, and they killed him too. That said… if they were out there investigating stolen stuff…. isn’t that what we pay them to do? I say good call on the law man, and I have no qualms with bull dogs of any kind

  15. All calls to a “houseless” camp , where “unhoused” people live, and where aggressive dogs are present should be handled by unarmed social workers, not police. This is not a police matter.

      1. Nope, it has been decided that cops should not be called on these scenes, this is a job for a 25 year old, unarmed, female social worker

      2. Actually yes; if it escalates to a crime, then the social worker can call for armed law enforcement backup. Same thing with domestic abuse calls; send social worker first and then then can assess the situation and then call for armed law enforcement presence. Now will this get a few social workers hurt or perhaps killed; perhaps, but it is all in the view that many have that just the presence of law enforcement escalates every situation and sone communities want no police in their neighborhoods. So let the experiment begin. And actually, we should mandate that veterinarians should as part of their license requirement with the State to be the first to respond to any aggressive animal call, not law enforcement.

          1. Criminals aren’t any more dangerous than the rest of us. That’s why Hummel and sheriff’s office let a convicted, unregistered sex offender that was arrested 2 times in 2 days for stealing go on OR. They also let his compadre, a convicted felon in possession of a weapon loose on OR after he was arrested twice in 2 days for stealing. In fact, they were roommates. Who needs police, we need social workers.

          2. Who do we send to investigate unethical news outlets that remove copy from their stories and delete the comments made that exposed them? Your legal team? Really?

  16. Just because dogs appear nice at times don’t mean they can’t appear vicious at another towards a different person. Obviously its a split second reaction the officers have to make as to the danger.

  17. Pit bulls like any other dog, can be great pets if they have a Responsible Pet Owner. Unfortunately, this breed has a long history of bad news with bad owners. They are the most dangerous dog out there. There are breeds that are more aggressive though. When a Wolf Hybrid is safer than a Pit Bull, you know there’s a problem. You never know a Dog’s History and any dog off leash can be dangerous.

  18. Whatever happened to the tranquilizer gun? Seems combined with a tazer even you could spare a few dogs lives? Interesting how 50 years ago it would appear Marlin Perkins and his pal Jim had better luck with angry Leopards and Hungry Lions than cops do with pitbulls. Cops sometimes have no time or choice for sure and have to do what they do. Not saying this is a fix by any means but you never hear of a tranquilizer guns being used or sttempted to be used any more.

  19. Yes, these dogs should have been under their owner’s control. However, the “shoot, shovel and shut-up” attitude runs deep and Implies culpability-definitely not the kind of behavior expected of law enforcement. The dog should have been saved and identified, possibly as evidence and hopefully returned to her owner so at least there could have been closure. It’s heartbreaking to lose an animal.

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