(Fred Weinberg/The Penny Press) – Last week, Sergeant William Wilson of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said that he was investigating a report of a shot fired in a downtown Las Vegas neighborhood. He said that he was investigating a disturbance call in the 200 block of Earl Street at 1:49 p.m. when he heard a shot fired in the backyard of a nearby residence on the 100 block of South 16th street. Wilson also said he heard yelling or moaning coming from the backyard, according to a police spokesman quoted in the Las Vegas Review Journal. The investigation led Wilson to the backyard of the home at 147 S. 16th St., near Carson Avenue, where he said a pit bull charged him. He fired one round and killed the dog.
Bubba was six years old, in his own yard and protecting his owners from intruders.
Most likely, he didn’t fire the shot Wilson said he heard.
What he did do, was act like a dog, legally protecting his territory from an unauthorized entrant. In fact, his owner, Victor Patino had the foresight to place a sign on the yard’s fence which said “Beware of dog”, presumably so that people like Wilson who may have had legitimate business entering the yard might ask the owner’s permission or at least his help to do so—something Wilson did not do.
Here is the statement released by Metro’s spokesman to the Review Journal:
“Because of the nature and circumstances surrounding the call, exigent circumstance exceptions to the Fourth Amendment were more than satisfied, and thus entry to the backyard was both lawful and within policy.”
As a journalist since I was 13 years old, I have learned in the past 47 years that whenever a police department uses the words “exigent circumstance exceptions to the Fourth Amendment” to defend an officer doing something as stupid and irresponsible as this they are absolutely full of crap.
One of many good reasons not to live in Clark County—or even visit there—is a police department which acts like SS Storm troopers being led by people who are, to put a point on it, not very smart. And I lived there for 14 years.
It happens my wife and I own four dogs, two of which are pit bulls. (Buddy and MJ)
I can promise you that if someone invades my fenced yard, my normally affectionate dogs would become very aggressive—even the little cocker spaniel, Jasper. They would do so because someone who they didn’t know would be invading their territory.
If I were home, I might grab my Ruger Security Six to investigate. Or my M1 Carbine with a 30 round magazine. And I really can’t tell you what might happen if I saw someone shooting at one of my dogs who was in the act of protecting my property and family. Depends on the exact set of facts. But I cannot promise you that the shooter would emerge unscathed.
You know why the Second Amendment exists? To protect people from a tyrannical government. All that crap about duck hunting and target shooting aside, the Second Amendment, which absolutely allows me to own an M1 Carbine and a Ruger Security Six, exists to allow me to defend myself. From any threat.
If the Clark County Commission and the Las Vegas City Council which fund Metro don’t sit on these clowns and get them completely under control, than sooner or later someone who has had enough is going to fight back. It’s be Rodney King all over again except this time without the racial or ethnic issues. Because Metro’s officers seem not to care who or what they shoot.
The only way any government stays in power is not because they have cops and guns. It is because citizens have enough respect for the system to comply with our law voluntarily.
Metro has become a caricature of the CBS TV show Vegas about Ralph Lamb who was the Sheriff when—in point of fact—the town was actually run by the representatives of that largest tax exempt organization in the nation—the mob. (You’ll notice that nobody ever says Lamb threw the mob out of Las Vegas. Because he didn’t.)
A few months ago, a Metro officer actually shot a Metro canine named Marco when Marco bit that officer’s partner until his handler told him to release the officer. There went about $10,000 worth of police dog because we have morons with guns in uniform.
Frankly, if you think there ought to be gun control, you probably ought to start with some of these clowns. Take their weapons away from them until they learn to use them properly.
If the elected Sheriff and the District Attorney can’t get these clowns under control, then it is up to the County Commission and the City Council to cut their funding.
Until then, here’s an idea. Boycott Las Vegas because what happens in Vegas can get you or your dog shot to death.