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Hobart chief defends using Taser on dog

From Staff Reports Published: June 13, 2009
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at allowed her to leave the porch of the house, he said.

But as she started back to her vehicle, the dog ran at her, he said.

At that point, the officer, who is a mother of five, felt the dog was going to attack her, he said.

She would have been justified to use deadly force, but she chose to use a less lethal force to stop the animal, Brown said.

The Taser probes struck the dog under the left ear and in the chest, which indicates the animal was facing her, he said.

After the first jolt wore off, the animal became aggressive again and the officer had to continue to stun the animal, Brown said. He arrived at the scene about six minutes later.

Data from the Taser indicates the dog was probably stunned in several 5-second bursts that altogether added up to less than a minute, he said.

Brown said the dog’s owner was understandably concerned about his dog. But the officer used "exceptional judgment” in not using lethal force or discharging a firearm that could have risked the lives of neighbors, he said.

"We are all animal lovers at this department — more than you can imagine,” the chief said.

"This officer was wanting to use the most humane method she could.”