An Idaho cop has been placed on administrative leave following his decision to gun down a man with Parkinsons’ service dog on Saturday. Officer Tarek Hassani was responding a report of a dog at large when he says the dog became aggressive with him, leading to Hassani firing his .45 at the animal and allowing the dog to die suffering. However owner Rick Clubb, locals, and nearly anyone else who has seen the video disagree.
As Hassani exited his vehicle, both of owner Tarek Hassani’s dogs began doing what was natural: barking. Hassani claims that the black Labrador attempted to bite him but the officer’s dash cam shows the dog repeatedly backing away, even after Hassani takes aggressive action toward the canine. Despite the officer’s repeated attempts to kick the animal, it simply backed away and continued to bark.
The dog’s clearly nonagressive actions did not matter to Hassani as he nonchalantly put a bullet in Filer resident Rick Clubb’s companion. While the owner was in violation of leash laws, as he allowed his dogs to run free for a bit, the dashcam footage reveals that his decision to respond, before anything else, with deadly force was likely due to his own nervousness around dogs.
After gunning down the animal, Hassani begins to yell at the owner, claiming that he “just shot [the] dog because it tried to bite [him].” When challenged on that point by the owner, Hassani began to yell at the man. With a noticeably nervous tone in his voice (and offering unprofessional and unhelpful side effects while inaccurately narrating the situation), Hassani speaks purely in hypotheticals: The dog might bite him. He might have to go to the emergency room. Hassani revealed that his decision was influenced by the fact that at one point, a dog bit him.
After it was all said and done, apparently after deciding that the man has not suffered enough at his hands, Hassani informed him he would be cited for violations of leash laws.
Many area residents have called the police station, demanding that Hassani be terminated. Since Monday, about sixty residents have called to express displeasure with, as resident Ryan Magnelli put it, “a police officer running around being a cowboy.” Magnelli, like Clubb, feels that the officer had other options. “Why didn’t he just pepper spray the dog?”
Another resident has started a Facebook page called “Officer Hassani Get Out Of Filer, Idaho,” which gathered 3,000 “likes” in under 24 hours. That number is currently approaching 7,000. Residents plan a rally at 6 p.m. on Wednesday asking that Hassani not serve in their town anymore.
Filer Police Chief Tim Reeves defends Hassani’s actions. “It got to the point where he felt that the dog was too much of a danger, and it was aggressing him too much, and he decided that he didn’t want to get bit, and for his own safety shot the dog and put it down, he said. “The officer does not have to get bit before he could defend himself against the dog.”
All six of the town’s police officers respond to dog calls, as Filer does not have a dedicated animal control officer, though no answer has been given as to the nature of the training officers receive with regard to handling a dog who is simply attempting to scare away what it perceives as an intruder.
The top video below is a news report on the incident. On the bottom is the full dashcam video. PLEASE DO NOT WATCH THE BOTTOM VIDEO IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO SEE THIS MAN COLDLY SLAUGHTER AN ANIMAL.
WARNING! THE BELOW VIDEO CONTAINS GRAPHIC FOOTAGE