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|Knoxville Police Officer Fired After Alleged Dog Shooting Incident
|POSTED 10:06pm 4/20/09 A Knoxville police officer will not have his contract renewed after a recent controversy involving the shooting of an animal in town.
The Knoxville City Council Monday night voted 4-3 to not renew Rick Pesci's contract after he was allegedly was involved with the shooting of his neighbor's dog.
The council heard from Samantha Boynton, a Knoxville resident, who says the night of her fathers' visitation nearly ten weeks ago, the dog may have wandered into the property of the officer and former Police Chief, when Boynton says Pesci shot the dog in the tail. She said the dog, Mitzi, a 55 pound German shepard mix, bled all over her carpet and even had to drag itself to the water bowl. Boynton told the council she hasn't had any contact with her neighbor before the event took place.
"I've never spoke to the man," Boynton said. "I've never had words with the man. This was the second time (Mitzi) has wandered into his yard. The first time, I got a letter from the city two days later saying my dog was a nuisance. She's not a nuisance, and that was the only time she had been in his yard. The second time she wandered in his yard, she got shot."
Pesci's contract was among a group of contracts the council was supposed to renew later in the meeting. A heated exchange began between Aldermen Lester Naslund and Kirk Heller over if the officer's contract could be terminated. The council then moved to executive session for nearly an hour before voting to not renew the officer's contract.
One resident who attended the meeting told the council they were concerned the officer might shoot one of their dogs if it got out.
Boynton says a police officer needs to conduct themselves appropriately both on and off duty.
The matter continues to be investigated by law enforcement officials.
(Samantha Boynton, standing, speaks to the Knoxville City Council Monday night. WGIL News Story and Photo by Dominic Fortini.)
|04 20 09 by Newsroom
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