PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — A family wants answers after an Escambia County sheriff’s deputy shot their dog in the head.
Mikaylah Coleman’s TikTok has more than 5 million views. It shows the seconds after a deputy shot her dog, Xander.
“We’re telling you stop,” she said. “He’s friendly… stop… he’s friendly… and you shot him anyway.”
The 3-year-old foxhound/beagle mix was in their yard near Kentucky and New Mexico Drive. Not far down the street, deputies were chasing after a suspect with felony warrants and that’s when Xander ran towards the road. Coleman said she took Xander outside as she usually does, and he got excited when he saw the commotion in the road.
“You just took somebody’s best friend… somebody’s dog… a family member,” Mikaylah said.
Her mom, Michelle Coleman, said he was a friendly dog even to strangers.
“He just wasn’t an aggressive dog,” Michelle said. “The people in the neighborhood knew Xander, and you know, there’s other ways he could’ve resolved the issue.”
The veterinarian told them he was in a lot of pain and would need surgeries, so they decided to put him down about an hour after the shot was fired.
WKRG News 5 reached out to the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office and received this statement:
“On 11/19/2021, Escambia County Sheriff’s Office deputies were in a foot pursuit with a suspect with felony warrants, when a dog who was loose in the neighborhood charged at one of our deputies. The deputy asked the owner to retrieve the dog; however, the dog continued towards the deputy in an aggressive manner. The deputy fired one shot when the dog got within three feet of him in the roadway.”– Escambia County Sheriff’s Office
“The officer then said to them, ‘You guys back up so I can put him out of his misery, and I’m like, ‘Why would you say that when you’re the one who put him in misery?” Michelle said.
The Colemans say they just want the deputy to face some kind of punishment and be held accountable for what happened.