LEWIS COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A sad story out of Lewis County where a man killed a small dog in front of several people, including a 6-year-old child.
According to a Lewis County sheriff’s report, the man felt threatened when the dogs ran across the street, into his yard and began barking, lunging, and even nipping at his pants legs.
According to the report, that’s when he went back into his house, retrieved his handgun and opened fire, ultimately hitting an 8-pound Yorkie named Gizmo.
Monica Dupont witnessed the dog being shot Mar. 2 around 8:30 p.m. in her Hohenwald neighborhood.
Monica says “Why? Why were you really in fear of your life from an 8-pound dog?”
Dupont is still in shock. Her son, Carson Tripp is dating a woman who owns the dogs. Tripp was watching the two dogs and was with his mother when the animals ran out the door and tore across the street unexpectedly.
“It was surreal. We were in shock. My grandson was here. We were in shock. I cannot believe he shot that little animal,” said Monica. “It’s a little dog. I can see if it is a bigger animal, but I just don’t understand killing someone’s little pet.”
Dupont told News 2 it happened while she was putting her 6-year-old grandson, Brantlee, in the family car. The child saw the entire incident.
That was traumatic. He wouldn’t get out of the car, he was traumatized,” said Dupont.
She remembers the sound blaring through the neighborhood. She says it was five, possibly six shots fired.
Dupont says she looked up and the man was running around the yard, chasing the little dog. She says the Yorkie is so friendly, it probably stopped to get pet, when he shot it.
Dupont says she screamed, “I said wait, we are coming.”
She says the 3-year-old Yorkie wouldn’t hurt anyone.
“No, sir. He was a sweet little guy.”
Dupont says when the gunfire erupted, she feared for her wellbeing and her grandchild.
“Yeah, when he pulled the gun out, my son said ‘I am going to get the dog’. We was going to see if we could help it, but there was no helping it, but he (the neighbor) pulled the gun out and chambered it and he said ‘nobody is touching the dog till the police get here.’ What are you to do?”
When asked what she told her 6-year-old, Dupont said “He’s been asking me is Gizmo ok. I had to tell him that he died, that we buried him. I don’t think he understands. He still asks how is Gizmo because he said ‘I saw the blood nana.’ And that is traumatic for a baby.”
At this time, the man who opened fire on the dog has not been charged though it could be presented to the District Attorney for review.
In Tennessee it is not against the law to shoot a dog if the animal is off a leash, is off its property, and the shooter feels threatened by the animal.