An off-duty Secret Service agent shot and killed a dog in New York City, the law enforcement agency confirmed Tuesday.
The Secret Service said an unidentified agent fatally shot an “unrestrained and aggressive canine” around 9:45 p.m. Monday in a Brooklyn neighborhood.
The dog was on a leash, but witnesses said no one was holding the leash and its owner was not present.
Crime scene photos published by the New York Daily News showed a leash protruding from under a sheet covering the dead dog. The newspaper identified the dog as a female Belgian Shepherd.
“As this is an ongoing investigation, the Secret Service will not have further comment,” the agency said in a statement.
Witnesses and police sources told New York media outlets they heard an argument followed by the sound of a single shot.
“I just thought it was local people having an argument,” Walker Blankinship, 51, told The New York Times.
A man and his girlfriend were walking with the dog when the unidentified Secret Service agent fired his shot, a police source told the Daily News.
Police agencies do not formally track officer-involved shootings involving dogs, a spokeswoman for the Animal Defense League told The Washington Times.
A 2011 study by the Justice Department estimated that between 25 to 30 dogs are killed by cops every day with the number likely exceeding 10,000 per year.
In 2017, Detroit police officers shot 54 dogs, according to publicly released police records.
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