Authorities: Officer shot dog while looking for cell phone - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Authorities: Officer shot dog while looking for family member's cell phone

ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -

What happened at a home on East Franklin Street on Monday afternoon isn't in question - reports from authorities and witnesses say a dog, a pit bill named "Cream," was shot by an Anderson police officer as that officer was responding to a report of a stolen cell phone.

But the dog's owners are questioning how the officer responded to the scene.

"He took it personal, and it was supposed to be professional," said family member Taira Gaines.

Deputies said on Wednesday that the shooting incident all stemmed from a report of a stolen cell phone. In the report provided to FOX Carolina by the Anderson Co. Sheriff's Office, it stated that the Anderson police officer was looking for a family member's cell phone when tracking software located it at the home on East Franklin Street.

According to incident reports, that police officer, while searching for the family member's cell phone at the address, shot the dog when he perceived it as a threat.

"All he kept saying was 'the phone, the phone, the phone,'" said Gaines.

Authorities said they ultimately found the stolen cell phone on a friend of one of the people who lived at the home.

FOX Carolina asked Anderson police if the officer should have been taken out of the investigation because of the personal connection. However, police said he didn't have to.

A representative said that he wasn't aware of any policy regarding conflicts of interest and it's usually up to the officer.

The family said someone else should've responded to the home. However, police said the officer did have a right to be there because he was called as backup for the initial cell phone theft case.

The dog's owners said they plan on filing a formal complaint with Anderson police.

Copyright 2014 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All Rights Reserved.

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