A Hammond Police K-9 officer is on administrative leave this week after the YouTube video was posted by a citizen who saw him striking a K-9 dog and lifting the dog by the leash off the ground repeatedly. The officer lifts the German Shepard by the leash and appears to be striking the dog with another leash in the stomach area.
I cannot discern what the dog did wrong except possible tug at the leash.
Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. issued a statement:
“Anybody who loves dogs as much as I do is always saddened and shocked anytime you hear of a dog’s abuse. When you find out it happened with an employee of yours, it makes it that much more shocking and disturbing. Please know that the Hammond PD does not condone that type of behavior of any of it’s officers, nor is it tolerated in this administration.”
What will be interesting is if the officer will contest the claim that this is abuse. The law allows for dogs to receive physical punishment. That is not considered abuse. The officer could challenge the claim that this is abuse as a legal matter. People routinely spank dogs and even kick dogs or yank their chains in acts of discipline. Spike and electric collars are often used. That could lead to a serious objection to discipline. While I share the mayor’s view, it could make for a difficult legal challenge.