A Baltimore police officer is facing felony animal cruelty charges after he allegedly slit the throat of a 7 year-old dog that had already been placed under control.
The incident happened Saturday, and Baltimore police officials announced charges against the unnamed officer on Wednesday.
Sarah Gossard’s Shar Pei, Nala, was loose over the weekend when police were called to catch her.
But after using a dog pole to round up Nala, one officer made a shocking move.
“Unfortunately, at some point after the dog was contained, one of our officers used a knife and cut the dog’s throat,” said Baltimore police deputy commissioner Dean Palmere, according to WBAL.
“This is outrageous and unacceptable breach of our protocol,” he said.
Nala’s owner, Sarah Gossard, said that she believes that Nala bit someone but that the officer’s actions were out of line.
“She was just the sweetest dog and would never hurt anyone. She was just scared that day and through all of those events – scared and lost, thirsty, hungry,” Gossard told WBAL.
“Yes I’m very sure that she bit someone, but the actions after that were not OK,” she said.
“We have no words to describe this. To say that we are appalled at this allegation is an understatement,” Baltimore police Deputy Commissioner Jerry Rodriguez said on Wednesday.
Baltimore police officials said that the officer was suspended without pay. They are also looking into why they only heard about the incident on Monday, two days after it occurred.
According to WBAL, Gossard called the circumstances under which she was first told of the incident “sketchy.” She said when police first told her that Nala had died in captivity they did not inform her that an officer had killer her.