Target: Chief Kim Vickers, Executive Director of Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education
Goal: To stop the unnecessary use of deadly force on family pets
Although police officers are meant to protect individuals and their families, there are instances in which a police officer will misuse their power and do more damage instead of actually helping. Unfortunately, an example of this can be seen with officers who deal with calls regarding family pets. Recently there have been several instances in the state of Texas that involve police officers using unnecessary deadly force on family pets.
It is sad and unfortunate that so many family pets have been wrongfully killed by police officers. Several families in Texas have been complaining and seeking justice against police officers for the murder of their family pets. Most of these pets were wrongfully killed simply because of a misunderstanding or miscommunication. Some family pets were killed while a police officer was at the wrong address; no measures were taken by the offending officer to actually confirm that they were at the right house and confronting the correct animal. In some of these cases, the family pet was shot and killed in front of its family members; in some instances, the pet was shot and killed in front of the children in the family.
Something needs to be done in order to protect the lives of innocent family pets. Most times a police officer feels the need to shoot an animal because they do not know how to react in a given situation. In order to better protect families, including the pets that are considered to be integral members of the family, police officers should receive better training that includes mandatory on-site animal behavior training. Also, policies regarding the use of deadly force on pets should be changed; police officers should no longer be allowed to use such force on these animals.
While this problem is not exclusive to the state of Texas, measures have been taken by the Fort Worth Police Department to change polices regarding the use of force on pets as well as implement a new training program. Other police departments need to follow this example in order to ensure the safety of family pets. Sign the petition below to urge Chief Kim Vickers to extend a new training program that includes animal behavior training to all police departments in Texas.
Dear Chief Vickers,
There have been several instances in which family pets have been wrongfully killed by police officers. Sadly, these instances could have been prevented if police officers had known what to do in these situations. Most of these unnecessary deaths were a result of a police officer’s lack of proper training in the field of animal behavior.
As a result, the Fort Worth Police Department has taken action to change its policies regarding the use of deadly force on family pets as well as implement a new training program that includes training to cover animal behaviors. If the Fort Worth PD is capable of implementing these changes, there is no excuse for all police departments in Texas to not do the same.
I am urging you to use your authority to make the changes necessary in order to prevent further tragedies such as these. Please take the action to support policy changes regarding the use of deadly force on family pets as well as require mandatory animal behavior training for all law enforcement officers.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Beverly & Pack via Flickr