|Don't pay your utility bill and a death squad might come calling. (Photo by Jason |
[A] South County woman filed a federal lawsuit that dog lovers should read with caution -- the allegations are pretty disturbing.
In the lawsuit, Angela Zorich claims that St. Louis County Police tactical officers -- aka the department's SWAT team -- raided her house in April 2014 and killed Kiya, her four-year-old pit bull.
The reason for the raid: to check if her home had electricity and natural gas service.
"This is an example of police overreaching and using excessive force to get a family out of their house," said Kenneth Chackes, the attorney who represents Zorich.
Aaround 12:41 p.m., Zorich was at home with several family members and her pit bull, Kiya, when a St. Louis County Police Tactical Response Unit burst through the door without knocking, according to her suit. The unit had at least five officers with M-4 rifles, supported by at least eight uniformed officers.
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The officers entered so quickly, Zorich's suit alleges, that Kiya didn't even have time to bark. A tactical officer fired three shots into the dog, and the dog's "bladder and bowels released and she fell to the floor." The dog "was laying on the floor in her own waste and blood struggling to breathe. She had a gaping hole in her chest."
Zorich claims the officers kept trying to talk to her about the natural gas, but she was focused on her dog, whom she'd raised as a puppy and who (she says) had "never shown agression to any person."
At one point in the raid, Zorich alleges, an officer pointed his firearm at her son's head and said "One word, motherfucker, and I'll put three in you."