A dog was shot by a UCPD officer in People’s Park early Saturday morning.
At 12:14 a.m., a UCPD officer was conducting a standard patrol of the park when he noticed an individual sleeping on the ground, said Capt. Margo Bennett. According to Bennett, an unleashed dog was by the individual’s side.
“The officer made several attempts to get the individual to wake up,” Bennett said. “The dog was not leashed and approached the officer, then jolted on the officer with teeth drawn. The officer drew his weapon and fired two rounds, both of which hit the dog.”
The dog’s owner, Wesley Simmons, was proclaimed “heavily intoxicated and very difficult to wake.” Once he did wake, he gathered his belongings and left the area, according to Bennett.
Richard “Scully” Knowles, a People’s Park resident and acquaintance of Simmons, was at the corner of Telegraph Avenue and Channing Way at the time of the shooting, but he said he heard both rounds fired. He said he has not seen Simmons since the shooting.
Knowles, who said he had been a licensed gun owner in the past, added that “there’s a time and a place to pull the trigger,” and was adamant that this was not it.
Bennett said the last time a UCPD officer shot a dog was on August 8, 2008 when an aggressive dog attacked an officer at University Village — a campus family housing community — in Albany.
The last time a UCPD officer fired a gun was last year on Nov. 15 at the Haas School of Business, when Christopher Travis, an undergraduate transfer student, was shot and killed after he brandished a loaded gun at officers in a computer lab.
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