Mitchell, S.D., police officer fires two shots at loose pit bull that ran at himA Mitchell police officer fired two rounds from his handgun at a pit bull that ran at him Saturday, according to Public Safety Chief Lyndon Overweg.
By: Tom Lawrence, The Daily Republic
A Mitchell police officer fired two rounds from his handgun at a pit bull that ran at him Saturday, according to Public Safety Chief Lyndon Overweg.
The rounds missed, Overweg said, but the dog did not injure the officer.
Officer Terry Reyelts responded to a report of an angry dog loose in the 300 block of East Hampton Avenue at 11:52 a.m. Saturday, according to Overweg.
A black dog, which had gotten out of its home through a window, had chased a 7-year-old girl and pinned her against a house and scratched the child’s back and stomach, the officer was told.
Officer Reyelts spoke to the child’s parents and was directed to a house where they thought the dog was at, Overweg said.
When Reyelts went to the home, a black pit bull came around a corner and ran at him, the chief said. The dog is about 2 feet high and around 50 pounds, Overweg said.
“It was thick, an adult dog, and it was angry when it came toward the officer,” he said. “It was barking and it was growling when it came at the officer.”
The dog ran off once the shots were fired by Reyelts, who used his service weapon, a .40-caliber Glock automatic.
“He was moving at the time, as was the dog, which makes it a very difficult shot,” Overweg said of the officer missing the two shots.
Several other officers responded and spotted the dog in the 100 block of South Main Street near the railroad yard and it was tracked there.
The owners were contacted and gained control of the dog without anyone being injured, Overweg said.
The girl was not seriously injured, he said, and no charges were filed.
The pit bull was taken into custody and placed in the city’s impound kennels, Overweg said.
Mitchell’s animal control officer, the officers involved and Overweg evaluated the situation and declared the dog dangerous, he said.
The dog owners, who had only recently acquired ownership of it, paid kennel fees and other costs and agreed to have it removed from the city limits, Overweg said.
The other option was having the dog put down, he said.
Overweg said he doesn’t know where the dog is now.
This is the first time Reyelts has fired shots in the line of duty, according to Overweg. He was not sanctioned for the shooting, which was deemed justified, the chief said.
Officers searched for the spent bullets and determined they had gone into the ground, Overweg said. Area houses and other buildings were checked to ensure there were no ricochets.