Thursday, October 24, 2013

Officer Goes on Dangerous In-Store Rampage...For a Squirrel

Amanda Warren
Activist Post

For the second time in two days I have had the opportunity to write about Dollar General store as the scene of a violent crime. Unlike yesterday's post where a pastor with a conceal-carry pistol saved the life of the Dollar General store staff and the criminal involved, this second incident involved an officer who was tasked with protecting the public, but instead acted as perpetrator of the crime.

This incident which occurred in Mountain City, TN in late September involved former officer Jody Putnam who felt justified in using deadly force in a crowded store when confronted inside with a vicious…and frightening…squirrel.

Property owner Carl Duffield had tried unsuccessfully to remove the frightened creature from the store and reached out to animal control, but that officer was out - so Putnam, who had no animal control experience or common sense, was dispatched instead.

Rather than find a humane trap, Putnam began immediately firing shots from his gun at the squirrel in the back of the crowded store. When that failed to kill something, he wildly hosed the area with pepper spray.

Duffield said:
Shooting back there, of course that should not have been, that should not have happened. Then [he] began to spray it with mace and pepper spray.
But the spray got on more than just the little squirrel:
There was a lot of people that come out and just like me they came out and they were coughing and a hacking it was comical...but I'm sure they didn't feel that way, the customers that came out.

Traumatized customers who re-entered the store were most likely further horrified to find the dead squirrel under Putnam's shoe.

One can only imagine the condition of the squirrel and its ultimate demise from being pepper sprayed to death. Some witnesses say they heard several of the shots fired in the store; others report they never heard them due to the scream of the squirrel.

This officer was fired October 2nd for failing to write a discharge weapon report and refusing to report an explanation of his actions. His firing by the town's Board of Mayor and Alderman appears to surround simple policy, not the dangerous behavior in handling the situation. Strange that this incident results in firing, whereas officers who torment, run over or kill innocent people and pets are lauded for using justifiable force and at most receive paid administrative leave for the consequences. As long as they have that written report...? Dollar General refuses to release the surveillance video.

Cops and animals don't mix well. Not only do hundreds (at least) of pet dogs wind up unnecessarily dead at the hands of police each year; but attempts to rescue an animal are prevented so an officer can kill the animal in front of bystanders. Police in California have even taken to capturing injured (what's the definition of injured?) strays, holding them and placing them on stands for target practice. Yes - that psychopathic behavior is really taking place.

And do squirrels and police have some kind of heated history we don't know about? Because there seems to be some animosity from police towards these furry little critters.

Back in April 2011, a police officer just outside a Texas college campus hosed a baby squirrel with pepper spray despite the cries of the surrounding students.  It was said to be "to protect the welfare of the students." One wonders about their welfare after clearly freaking out while witnessing his casual actions.

No one who calls the cops for help really expects the trauma and damage that often takes place. For all the animal lovers out there, it might be a good idea to keep in touch with your local shelters, rescue units, and animal hospitals. They cannot always be there right away, because they aren't heavily funded and use volunteer help. You might emphasize the importance of their taking calls so that animals don't end up killed this way - shot at and maced to death. You might even volunteer your own services to help if an animal is scared or injured. It stands to reason that if an animal is loose inside an establishment, to remain calm and by golly, don't call police! Doors can remain open, customers can be alerted and some gentle help can get the animal out - or just leave it the heck alone. If all else fails and an animal outreach isn't available, then call the Fire Department directly (not through 911); they are often made up of volunteers who are equipped to rescue animals.

Law enforcement is simply that - law (code, mandate) en-FORCE-ment. Call the cops for minor issues and you might be the one who gets hosed and left feeling like an animal killer.


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Hide Behind said...

I think the officer was in fear for his life he had heard squirrels eats nuts.
As a timber faller/logger my wife often raised or repaired back to natural all manner of birds and animals and onle one of them never returned to wild, Rocky the Flying Squirrel
She raise two almost hairless eyes not open waifs . Raising one till 9 weeks and a friend had Brenda for awhile but Rocky took a whole year before finding a treeto climb, our Chrismas tree and he jus hung therecon a limb 1rst time an hour until wife rscued him.
Very smart and reson wife saved him was because her Himalaan ca also nursed.
DAMNED CAT WOULD CHASE IT UP OUR 13' tall draperys and get pissed when he would launch into wifes lap and go hide under her waist length hair.
Huge house 3 story farm and all wife had do was scratch floo and soon we would hear rocky thump the floor and then scurry to wherever she was for over three years
Put this here to show ignorance of many people when it comes to wild animals.
I have touched wild deer elk and sundry wildlife and birds and hell had a damned elk and another time deer come inside for a look.
We never got excited th.ey took a look and went back out.
Man kills sometimes for pleasure and jus needs opportunity to exercise the kill.
When an officer kills a pet or an minor non threatening fur balls there are man ays shor of killing to mov hem along.
Tha said there are times to kill.. he animal is an animal tha does go nuts, rocky did jus before naural death but have had coons anr evenpossom try to move in.
Never let a damned pack rat near your place you can get rid by plastic snakes and live traps.
Any was there is as much beteeen man and animalhell I known men had bears and wildcats as friends.
That is key friends have a mind contact.
Jus as some humans do have true soulmates
Only man wll kill a soulmate through his brutish need to destroy or control.
Sorry of tpic but why man kills, the like it some love it.

Anonymous said...

I've decided based on so much of what I have seen on YouTube, never to call a cop for any manner of "animal rescue". They are trigger happy assholes. Period. Any excuse to shoot at a living being-- fury or otherwise.

Leslie said...

Piece of advice: Don't call the cops for anything, unless you want something or someone dead. And realize when you do that it might just wind up being you that gets in the line of fire.

Anonymous said...

Saw a funny meme picture online the other day. It was a picture of a cop and he said, "Parents, stop teaching your children to fear us. We're here to HELP."

I had a good laugh. Then me and my kids had a good talk about it.

Anonymous said...

A meeting of the minds proved to be more frightening for the cop than for the squirrel. The squirrel never counted on MACE and a service weapon, figuring the cop would just bump noses and leave. Social dominance was established here. Too bad the furry little squirrel had to sacrifice its life on the altar of freedom to prove being nice is better. Police officer FAIL.

Anonymous said...

there are cops that live in my village here in (*) but even though they are nice enough to have a beer with at the local bar, I would never NEVER want them to come to save an animal or even a person.....they have a different mind from normal fact my mother, at 94 still says, "once a priest or a cop never again a man".....and I think she is right.....!

Anonymous said...

The incident with the squirrel, the cop and Dollar General was made up...right? Somebody...?

Anonymous said...

Late 80s I was driving on the interstate and a sheriff was poppin his gun from the side of the highway at a little fawn trying to jump the fence for a get away. Just recently a guy over dosed on his diabetes meds and a family member called 911, cops show up and immediately killed the guy.

Cops would rather kill you than deal with you.

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