Daytona officer fatally shoots dog to stop attack, police say

Owner doesn’t know why dog became aggressive

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – An officer fatally shot a pit bull that bit him while he was responding to a call Friday morning, according to the Daytona Beach Police Department.

Police said they were called to Reva Street around 1:45 a.m. to investigate a report of a disturbance.

When they knocked on the door of a home where a possible witness lived, the woman’s pit bull and rottweiler ran toward officers Michael Bodkin and Saheed Ali, according to a news release.

The officers backed away and in the process, Ali fell to the ground and had to kick the white pit bull away from him.

Authorities said that same dog charged Bodkin and bit his right forearm and hand.

Records show the owner tried to pull the dog away by his collar but was unable to stop the attack.

When she saw Bodkin pull out his gun, she yelled, “Please stop,” according to the report.

Bodkin shot the dog twice. The animal died at the scene.

The owner said she found the dog wandering in her yard about a week before the attack and brought him into her home. She said he’d never been aggressive toward her or her children.

Both officers received treatment for their wounds.

Daytona Beach Police Chief Craig Capri said the officer did what he had to do to protect himself.

“You don’t want to use deadly force, especially for human life but even with animals. I mean, you don’t want to pull your weapon out. Hopefully, you’ll go your whole career never pulling out this weapon and using it. That’s the goal. And the dog just, it’s a pit bull. (He) attacked him and bit him. I mean, (Bodkin) waited, he showed great restraint trying to get away from the dog but when the dog clamped down on his arm, he had no choice at that point. You know the damage that could be done by a dog. It’s unfortunate but most importantly, our officers are OK,”Capri said.

The department’s Office of Professional Standards is investigating, which is standard procedure.

Bodkin is a full-time patrol officer who has been with the department since January 2018. He was training Ali, who was hired in July as a full-time patrol officer.

Ali will return to normal duty on Monday while Bodkin will be on light duty when he returns the same day.

About the Author: