Two pit bulls have been shot to death in the last week in Springfield, Mo., where a ban on the dogs was passed earlier this month.
One family’s pit bull was killed on Saturday after a neighbor pulled the trigger on the dog when it jumped a fence into a yard and attacked the dog that lives there, Springfield police said.
Neighbor Randy Sanders heard everything from his front porch, according to OzarksFirst.com.
“It seemed like it was five or six shots, followed by a whole bunch of screaming,” Sanders said.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Kansas City Star
After a woman tried to separate the dogs, a man intervened, police said. But when the pit bull turned on him, he shot it dead.
The pit bull’s owner, Norman Jackson, said his dog liked to go behind the shed to meet up with with the other dog. He’s mourning the loss of 15-year-old Chloe, whom he considered a family member.
“Some people have pets and they are just pets,” Jackson said, according to KY3. “Our pets are like our kids. They do everything with us, they are in family photos and everything else.”
The man who shot the dog did not comment.
A similar story unfolded earlier in the week.
On Thursday, Springfield resident Tom Brashears shot an unleashed pit bull to death with his 9mm pistol because the dog had grabbed Brashears’ leashed dog by the neck.
The incident happened Wednesday afternoon, reports the Springfield News-Leader.
Brashears said he had just come home from work and took Montana, his 1-year-old shelter rescue dog, for his daily walk.
“We get almost to the end of the block, and I look up and see these two white pit bulls in the yard. I stop. I froze immediately,” he told the News-Leader. “I was getting ready to turn around and go back the other way when all of a sudden that one gets up, he looks at us, and he starts running full blast for us.”
Brashears said the pit bull’s owner ran out of his house trying to get the dog, but the dog run faster.
Brashears was holding Montana by his leash, he said, and he pulled his pistol from its holster as the pit bull grabbed Montana by the neck.
“I was afraid he was going to kill Montana,” Brashears said. “I shot him. I don’t remember pulling the trigger, but the gun was touching the dog when it happened.”
A neighbor came out with a handgun and pointed it at Brashears.
Brashears said he has a concealed-carry permit and he put the gun on the ground, then called 911.
Police arrived and confiscated both weapons.
The ordinance Springfield approved earlier this month will phase in the ban starting Jan. 1. Owners who register their pit bulls before then can keep the animals in the city. No new registrations would be accepted after Jan. 1, and any unregistered pit bulls found in the city could be seized and disposed of.
The News-Leader reports opponents of the ban said they plan to immediately begin collecting signatures to put the issue to a popular vote.
Since the debate began, council members have been inundated with hundreds of emails, with most coming from dog lovers and pit bull advocates.
Mayor Ken McClure and other supporters say the ban protects Springfield residents from dangerous animals.