Officer cleared of wrongdoing in shooting of dog

The following is a news release from the Lake Charles Police Department:

The Lake Charles Police Department has concluded its internal investigation into the July 2, 2012, shooting of a K-9, at the residence of 3204 Hodges Street.

This incident happened during a police vehicle pursuit, which subsequently led to a foot pursuit.

Police were pursuing three carjacking suspects, who violently beat the driver moments earlier.

While trying to apprehend these felons, the pursuing officer, after running several blocks, found himself under the attack of two dogs who had escaped their back yard through an open gate.

According to a civilian witness, the now deceased dog placed its open mouth onto the officer's leg.

The police officer, without the benefit of time, was unable to transition to a less than lethal weapon, and shot the dog, preventing him from being bitten. The second dog then stopped its pursuit of the officer.

The incident was investigated by the commander of the Internal Affairs Division. During his investigation, and as with any police firearms discharge investigation, Sgt. Shawn Caldwell convened a board of veteran officers with supervisory and training experience who reviewed the case.

As part of the investigation, independent witness statements were collected and reviewed.

After reviewing all statements, both from law enforcement and civilian witnesses, the board found that the officer did not violate any police department policies, state or federal laws. As a result, no disciplinary action will be taken against the police officer.