‘This is not justifiable:’ Owner speaks after police shoot pit bull

Posted at 10:31 PM, Sep 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-16 22:32:13-04

Notice: video below may contain images disturbing and graphic to some

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- A family's dog is going to be losing a leg after body camera footage shows it being shot by an officer over the weekend.

The police department said officers were responding to a report of an aggressive dog chasing people in the very early hours of Friday morning.

The body camera footage from the incident was posted to the department's Facebook page. It has stirred up quite the debate since the Grand Rapids Police Department made it public Saturday evening.

FOX 17 spoke to the dog's owner, Shequeel Robinson, about the situation.

“This is not justifiable," Robinson said. “She took a bullet in her face, this close to her eye, and then one in the shoulder, and now her shoulder needs to be amputated.”

The shooting happened in the 1700 block of Kalamazoo Avenue in Grand Rapids. Police say they tried for 30 minutes to secure the 5-year-old Pit Bull named Youneek. They reportedly couldn't identify the owner and say it charged a neighbor.

"She’s not an aggressive dog at all," Robinson said. "Youneek is a loving dog.”

Robinson said the dog is normally on a leash but doesn't know why she wasn't that night.

She says she works third shift and rushed home to try and intervene. She also claims there's more to the story than what the released footage shows. "They only showed her coming off her property after they provoked her," Robinson said. "And she was protecting her home. She never left her property until they was provoking her, and that’s when she charged.”

The dog's owner and a local rescue group said the dog was picked up by animal control hours later.

“The dog was in distress, a lot of barking.”

Younkee spent time at a local vet, and a nearby rescue group called Michele's Rescue helped take care of the bill.

“I have a very deep passion for animals, and I would want someone to do that for me," said Michele Schaut, owner of Michele's Rescue.

The dog has been taken to another veterinarian on the east side of the state,  where an amputation is scheduled for Monday.

In its Facebook post, the Grand Rapids Police Department said, "Law enforcement officers are forced to do things every single day that they wish they did not have to do ... and GRPD is no exception." FOX 17 reached out to GRPD for further comment but has not heard back.

As for Robinson, she was given a citation for having an unleashed dog. She plans to follow up with the department on that matter.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to to help cover medical bills for Youneek. Click here for more information.