1 August, Arlington, Texas – a homeless woman lying on the grass prompted people to call the police. Sent to check on her welfare, police shot her while they were trying to shoot her dog.
Apparently the homeless woman was passed out; she may simply have been sleeping. Her dog, said to be a small, young pitbull cross allegedly ‘charged’ at the police – so they decided to take out a gun and shoot it multiple times.
Only they missed, and the woman, Margarita Victoria Brooks, was hit, later to be pronounced dead in hospital.
We have not seen the officers’ bodycam footage yet; it will be shown to a court. This is neither protecting nor serving.
Please contact Arlington police through one of the channels below and give them the following message, personalized to your liking:
A woman lies dead after one of your officers decided to try to shoot her dog and missed: I want such a person immediately relieved of any duty without pay, and I want your guarantee such a trigger-happy person will not kill again. Get them out of policing now.
I cannot believe that your officers saw fit to try to shoot a dog as a first resort, even if it was ‘charging’. Is this really what your training says? If so, you need to reassess before more animals and people are senselessly killed. I would like to hear why your officers, upon seeing this allegedly dangerous dog, continued to approach and call out without first getting any protective clothing, tasers, an animal handler unit. If the woman was unconscious and had a dangerous unrestrained dog – they should have got an animal specialist. If she was awake and moving, then you had no further business with her. Which was it? Your officer fired multiple shots, clearly in the woman’s direction: this is unacceptable. How many times has this officer used his gun? What were the outcomes? We need to find this out as soon as disclosure is legally possible.
If the footage 100% confirms your officer’s version of events, you still need to do some serious re-thinking of how you deal with unresponsive people especially if they have dogs, even if dogs are running at you. There are alternatives to guns.
If the footage does not 100% confirm that a clearly dangerous dog made your trained officers fear for their lives so much so that they had to shoot, then you and your organisation are deeply flawed and deeply responsible for this avoidable death. Many of us are working hard to teach that guns are only ever a last resort: if as it seems guns are Arlington Police’s first resort, perhaps you should resign en masse. The message you send out about immediately escalating to lethal force is one with dangerous repercussions all around us, and this has to stop. I will be watching this situation, and demand justice for this woman (and what have you done with the dog?).
Email: (their website is conveniently down at present)
Please copy Governor Abbott on your correspondence to the police:
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