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Justice for Epic and Samson

August 31, 2010
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Two Great Danes, Samson and Epic were shot in Ocala by a neighbor with a 9mm Glock. They got out accidentally and the owners were out looking for them at the time they were killed. One died on scene, the other died hours later at the vet.  The Sheriff’s department was called to “assist” animal control in the investigation. Animal control’s report indicates that the are “standing behind” the sheriff’s investigation since animal control is not equipped to deal with cases involving the discharge of a firearm.

Except the only investigation done by the Sheriff’s department was to obtain a self serving statement from the shooter.  The Sheriff’s department took no photos, did not document the scene, did not protect the crime scene, did not take any shell casings, locate the bullets or even photograph the blood evidence.  They did manage to talk to (but not take a statement from) two witnesses who stated that the dogs were “not a threat.”  The dogs had been in front of the witness’s house, and appeared dehydrated and thirsty from being out in the Florida heat for several hours. According to the witnesses, the dogs did lope down towards the shooter, but “before they ever got to him, he began firing.”

Both agencies have decided that they will “let the state attorney decide whether to file charges.” The only problem is, what have the agencies done to give the state attorney any information to make a decision?

This sounds like the Bear Bear case all over again. Even the same gun.

What a sad way for the authorities to investigate a case and treat two beautiful loved dogs.  I will be following this case closely and report on any action taken by the state attorney.

The shooting of Epic and Samson will be reviewed by the Marion County State Attorney Office Tuesday, August 31, 2010. Witness statements recently taken have revealed that the shooter ignored the instructions of the 911 operator and a neighbor to stay in the house. Contrary to what was reported, the witnesses say that the shooter was not in his yard when he fired, but in the street, as were the two dogs. The shooter shot the first dog in the face, despite the fact that witnesses stated that the dogs were merely loping towards him. The dogs did not increase their speed as the trotted towards the shooter, and were not growling, showing teeth or snarling. Witnesses say that the dogs did not pose a threat and they do not understand why the shooter took the actions he did. Most disturbing, is the fact that after the shooter shot the first dog in the face, the other dog turned and ran – the shooter followed the dog and shot it in the back and neck, killing Epic at the scene. Samson died later at the vet.

Cases involving dogs do not get priority. We need to show the Marion County Attorney that the shooter should not go unpunished. Please sign the petition(s) and share with everyone you think might have an interest.

Petition Text

Justice For Epic and Samson – Prosecute the shooter

Greetings,

The shooting of Epic and Samson was unjustified and criminal. The shooter’s actions deserve and require criminal prosecution. This was not a case of self defense. The shooter disregarded the instructions of the 911 operator and a neighbor who told him to stay in the house. Instead he chose to step into the public street and fire three shots at dogs witnesses describe as not a threat. The fact that he pursued the female and shot it in the back proves that he was not in fear for his life.

Please honor the lives of Epic and Samson by prosecuting the shooter to the full extent of the law. This was an intentional act of killing. I know that there may be reservations about using valuable resources for a case such as this. But if the shooter walks away without any penalty, what message are we sending? That such an act is condoned by the law? The shooter’s act of killing these two dogs shows a lack of empathy for all beings, including humans.

I hope that the criminal legal system does not fail these two beautiful loved dogs.

[Your name]

RELATED:
Federal police officer shoots dog in Arundel park, please protest

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