DC police shooting of family's pit bull under investigation

Image 1 of 3

A D.C. family left heartbroken after they say an officer shot and killed their pit bull for no reason outside of her home sought answers from police on Wednesday.

Selina West claims she told responding officers over and over again that her dog was in her house and asked if she could close the front door gate, but was never allowed to do so. Instead, the family's 9-year-old pit bull, Phresh, ran outside to the family's front yard and was shot dead by one of the officers.

The incident happened Sunday morning and crime scene technicians and detectives arrived after the shooting and took evidence. But when we arrived at the house on Tuesday evening to speak to the family, FOX 5 discovered a shell casing left behind in the yard.

Following our report, D.C. police along with more crime scene technicians showed up to the house again Wednesday morning photographing the scene and likely seeking to recover the shell casing from their own officer's gun that was left behind.

Phresh's owner also demanded to speak to a police official at the Seventh District police station demanding information on who killed her dog and to watch the body camera footage of the incident. But the officer who spoke with West said it was not going to happen on this day because it is still under investigation.

"It's actually going through an administrative state first - so that's an administrative investigation," the officer told her.

He also explained to West, "If we have a discharge of a service weapon, we do a use-of-force investigation. When we do a [use-of-force investigation], that's where we have to lay out everything that has occurred during the course of that shooting and it's included in that investigation."

On Wednesday, D.C. police said in a statement:

"Our sincerest condolences go out to the family who has lost their pet. It is never our intention to have to use force, and we have implemented measures in an attempt to prevent these types of incidents. This matter will be thoroughly investigated to determine if the use of force was justified under the circumstances."

FOX 5 has also put in an official request to view the body camera footage.