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Police: Marion Co. sergeant shoots own police dog

ShootingsRobert Campbell

A Marion County Sheriff's Office sergeant said he was forced to shoot his own dog, and now the shooting is under investigation by his own department and the Hancock County Sheriff's Department.

"The dog had escaped earlier that day from his kennel, and while he was out there, the dog tried to come at him,” said Captain Robert Campbell with the Hancock County Sheriff's Department. “He did have some bite marks on him from the dog."

According to the police report, Sgt. Tom Shambaugh's dog Paco "went to the area of the kennel where he had escaped from that [that] morning."

Shambaugh claimed he feared for his safety because the dog was agitated and aggressive so he grabbed his department-issued 12-gauge shotgun and shot the dog twice.

The Hancock County Sheriff's Department responded to a 911 call he placed after he called his superiors.

The dog was already dead.  The police report stated the dog sustained "one shot to stop the threat, and the second shot to stop the action."

"[The dog] was donated to him, but it was in the process of being cleared to be used I think for narcotics use," said Captain Campbell.

Campbell also explained why they were investigating.

"Was the shooting appropriate, and was there any aggravated circumstances that would have been appropriate for him to shoot the dog."

The Marion County Sheriff's Office would not comment on the ongoing investigation. Shambaugh also declined an interview.

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