By Maggie Cassidy
Valley News Staff Writer
Hartford — The owners of a dog say an off-duty Hartford police officer was out of line this weekend when he shot and killed their pet at a public park after a fight broke out between the 2-year-old pit bull and one of the officer’s two huskies.
Cheryl Gray, 44, who took the slain dog named Diesel on one of their regular visits to the Watson Upper Valley Dog Park in Hartford on Saturday, said the two dogs tussled after one husky lunged toward Diesel from atop a picnic table while the officer, Logan Scelza, was using his phone on a bench about 15 yards away.
She acknowledged Diesel “had (the red husky) by the neck.” Gray said Scelza ran over, tried to pull the dogs apart before firing three “warning” shots into the ground and then shooting Diesel four times — once in the face and three times in the chest.
There were about a dozen other people, including a 4-year-old girl, in the dog park at the time of the shooting.
“I can’t get it out of my head at all,” a distraught Gray said through tears on Monday. “It was unnecessary force.” Continue reading