San Antonio Officer Goes To Wrong House On Call And Shoots Family’s Pet Dog

We have another dog shooting by an officer who went to the wrong house on a call. Albert Morales and his brother Hector Serna were awoken by a San Antonio officer banging on a window of their home before dawn. The officer was at the wrong house in responding to a call about a deceased person. As almost an afterthought, according to Morales, the officer said that he might want to check out his dog.

The actual call was from a house blocks away on another street with a different house number. Morales said that after 20 minutes when the officer was leaving, the officer mentioned that he might want to check his dog. According to Morales the officer explained “he trotted up to me after I turned the corner, came to my feet and I shot him.” The officer allegedly said that when the pit bull failed to get back when ordered to do so, he shot the animal. Morales says that the officer admitted that the dog did not growl at him.

The pit bull was shot down through the mouth but survived — though it will have to be on a liquid diet and wear a cone and muzzle for weeks of recovery.

The family wants the police to pay the hundreds of dollars in vet bills, but the police have not indicated whether they will pay. There is also no indication of an investigation into the allegation that the officer admitted that he shot a dog that was neither growling nor attacking.

Source: KSAT

46 thoughts on “San Antonio Officer Goes To Wrong House On Call And Shoots Family’s Pet Dog”

  1. When cops do wrong things, and the PD doesn’t step up and do the right thing, they make it rough for all cops because it simply causes a state of mistrust. How are we to know which cop is good and which isn’t? SAPD screwed this up. They should have reprimanded the officer, paid the vet bills and apologized. Now they have a bigger mess on their hand in terms of a law suit but more importantly, they have earned the mistrust of the larger community. Cops need to understand that they sometimes may need to rely on community members for their own safety.

    1. Awesome take Michelle, I had a police scanner for years. Locally they switched from digital to analog, or vice versa. My 15 year old scanner no longer works. The best advertisement for policemen(women)is to have citizens listen to the scanner live, and hear what some nights are like for these fine and honest people,They are primarily working for a living, they do struggle, Some days lives are threatened. This is their job… to intervene and protect.
      When a police officer acts swiftly and justly, they are the glue of society. All Respectful Dutiful officers deserve high Respect from ALL citizens. …AMEN…. YES there are bad apples. YES bad decisions are made.

      Michelle, your point of why do departments back up bad decisions is beyond my ken. Every situation is different. Every situation is fluid. The actions of an officer has great influence at times that can determine the direction (good or bad) of how the situation inflames or lessens.
      A good responsible Officer may have the toughest job in the world.
      Politics and fear protect the incompetent. Training expense and investment are considered in discipline, weighed and balanced in bottom line decisions.
      The politics screw up rational decisions. The fear of lawsuits muddy up principled accurate evaluations. …. And the fact that police officers at times are in situations that they may be dead in one second add a significant balance to their duty and doing it, while we regular citizens go about our daily business (relatively free of fear).

      Throw the true bums out!! YES. Put the semi bums on desk duty.
      Honor and respect the fine officers that allow our daily freedoms.
      I bsupport a Rational, Reasonable, Citizens review board that has oversight and the weight of judgement on the behavior and actions of LEOs.
      The problem here is who interprets rational and reasonable, and what sections of the country we are in. Pandoras box for sure. Rationality and reason can be a Huge step forward.

      Finally my final opinion, As long as bad apples are coddled, and the public does not see accountability brought to “cowboy cops” the situation will not improve. ….. No officer should shoot a dog… because he just can..and get away with it. //// Did I say dog? … No officer should shoot a human….. because s/he just can. Bad apples should just go away. IMO 90% of good honest LEOs know who the bad apples are.
      Darren … I ask you, (if you read this) Do brother and sister officers know over time who the bad apples are?? How can they not ??

  2. SAPD is completely wrong. They were at the wrong address! And even if they were at the right address the officer went into the back yard and shot a non-aggressive dog. SAPD should pay medical expenses and more. The owners should seek legal advice and press charges against the department.

  3. Sara, a few different points. First, while I’m certain that many mailmen, meter readers and joggers do get bitten and some seriously injured, I think you are factually incorrect to suggest that it is not uncommon for such people to be killed by dogs. It is extremely rare (nonexistent?) for any such persons to be killed by a dog. I cannot think of ever reading of such a case. I have looked without finding a single example of a dog killing a cop, and have challenged people who have made a similar misstatement with respect to dogs killing cops and no one has ever produced a single reported instance of it happening. I suspect that there are likewise few, if any, reported instances of dogs killing mailmen, meter readers, or joggers. Regardless, your statement that they “easily” become death statistics is simply wrong. Second, your point about cops going places that mailmen, meter readers, and joggers don’t might have some relevance if we were talking only about dogs killed by cops in such places. We’re not. In case you didn’t read the story at issue, the cop killed the dog outside the owner’s home on his own property. Certainly mailmen and meter readers go exactly where this cop did. They do so much more frequently than cops do and with much less tragic results (or judging from your response, perhaps I’m assuming too much to think that you feel a family dog being killed by a cop is tragic? Perhaps therein lies our differing viewpoints.). There may be times when a cop’s job creates different circumstances that make it more likely that the cop needs to use deadly force against a dog. That absolutely does not explain the vast disparity in the number of dogs killed by cops vs the number of dogs killed by other professions or people that have much more frequent encounters with dogs. Third, I’ve never said and do not believe that every instance of a cop killing a dog is unjustifiable. I don’t doubt that sometimes it is justified. But I’ve read way too many stories of shoot first cops to not realize that many times it is not. That certainly appears to be the case in this story, although you’d obviously want to hear all sides and get all the relevant facts if you were actually responsible for disciplining the officer instead of just expressing an opinion on the internet.

  4. Sara, I am a carrier, I wrote a comment earlier. You are right in that a cop entering a property has more on their mind than going to the mailbox and leaving. I am very reserved in my judgement when so few facts are known.
    In 34 yrs of delivering I have my own technique dealing with dogs, and I always have the option of retreat (sometimes that’s difficult!). An LEO in many circumstance doesn’t have that option.
    This I know is a fact. : Some people deal with dogs MUCH better than others.
    I believe a training course would be useful, but experience (as usual) offer the best learned lessons. I have 5 minor bites to show for it.
    Those little ones are incredible !!! 🙂

  5. Bruce, I need house painters on occasion and hire them and respect their craft but it doesn’t keep me from complaining if I get a bad one or firing one because he is doing a lousy job. The police are employees and should be subject to the normal constraints of an employer/employee relationship. No one should be shielded from those normal constraints just because of the profession they have.

  6. Waldo,
    The mail carriers, utility people and joggers can and do easily become a dog bite or injury/death statistic as you can easily search it out. And one factor you are conveniently disregarding or are completely oblivious to are the circumstances between the cop and dog encounter, vs and the mailcarriers and dog encounter. Cops have more elements of danger and uncertainy. They go in all al hours of night. In addition, cops at times go in areas of house, where a mail carrier does not, resulting in a more harassing, malicious behavior from a dog.

  7. You’re full of shit Bruce and simply an apologist for cop incompetence. Why is it that cops are constantly killing dogs but not mailmen or meter readers or joggers who must have orders of magnitude more dog encounters? I don’t hate cops. I do think cops who are either too scared when faced with a dog barking at them or lacking common sense in how to deal with animals or just on a power trip dishonor the profession and make it more difficult for competent cops to do their jobs because their incompetence ruins community trust and cooperation.

  8. Justice would be for someone to go to the dog shooters house, shoot him when he comes out for his paper and go to the door to wifeypoo and say, by the way…

  9. No, Bruce. I’ve been in a fenced yard with a rottweiler. He sneaked up on me. Not a good sign. Fortunately I had a large bag with me and kept it between me and the dog while I slowly retreated. It never occurred to me to do anything to hurt the dog. He was doing his job as security. When I spoke to my friend later she said he had been trained to not like white folks. His buddy was in prison for dealing drugs and the dog was his protection.

  10. Most you people are cop haters until you need one then you complain that they weren’t there soon enough. If you thought were going to get bit you would shoot the dog too.

  11. THE COP APOLOGIZED to the owner for shooting the dog, according to the news video! and it was a puppy! if a pit bull puppy. yeah, the SAPD has some investigating to do… the folks who called in the 911 it appears used to live in the house the cop wrongly showed up at… but the dog’s “family” bought that house over a year ago! that’s some mix-up! and again, cops show up in the pre-dawn dark and start shooting and banging on the house, without identifying themselves, according to the home-owner.

  12. Frankly — I think that is why “House Hunters International” on HGTV has become the favorite show of my wife and I. I am about 6 or so years from a point where I can quit working – at my current job — maybe a writing a book or buying an espresso bar (so I can chat with nice people as part of my work) after that. We have a 3 and 1/2 year old son and I can’t imagine bringing him up here. Right now, he is a wonderful, sensitive and compassionate kid – I don’t want this society turning him into a barbarian.

  13. Eric – not Rome but Venice. When trade was running hot there people were making very large fortunes & it was possible for simple people, tradesmen & even laborers to become very wealthy. This scared the blue bloods so they created an official book of nobility & if you were not in it you could never become a nobleman. Their next step was to close off the avenues for average people to share in the great wealth of that then great city. They used the power of the state to enforce these differences to benefit themselves at the expense of the citizenry.

    It took a while but the vibrant, growing, powerful city became a stifled impoverished place with a huge income gap and no social mobility. It has never recovered. Does this sound familiar? It should we are watching it being done to us here in the US right now.

  14. lottakatz – they don’t fire a cop for behaving like that – they promote him/her. We are becoming a nation of thugs — many of whom are wearing uniforms.

    Does anybody else notice the similarity between the USA today and Rome about 2,500 years ago?

  15. Here the police can admit to making a mistake and do the right thing for very little money. Less than an attorney will cost them. They also would show the community that they have integrity.

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