Authorities shoot dog during probation search in Boulder Creek

By Stephen Baxter

Santa Cruz Sentinel
Posted: 04/14/2011 08:09:15 PM PDT

A sheriff’s deputy shot a bull terrier puppy to death when the dog rushed out of a front door and barked during a probation search on Thursday in Boulder Creek, authorities said.

About 11:30 a.m. in the 200 block of Anchor Court, two deputies knocked on the door of 48-year-old Lonni Locatelli, who was on probation for a meth-related conviction, said Sgt. Dan Campos. Loud knocking alerted Locatelli’s two dogs, a 12-pound, 5-month-old female bull terrier named Sheeba and a 2-year-old pit bull mix, Locatelli said.

The dogs barked. Locatelli was in the shower, and he heard the knocking and barking and answered the door.

As he opened the door, the dogs ran to a waist-high retaining wall above the walkway, Locatelli said. One of the deputies reached for his pepper spray and fired it at Sheeba, said Sgt. Dan Campos.

The deputy then pulled out a gun and shot the dog once, Campos said. The deputy prepared to shoot the other dog, but his partner told him to stop, Locatelli said.

“She was just barking, she never hurt anybody,” Locatelli said. “I couldn’t even believe it.”

The dog was still alive, and he picked her up and ran to his Jeep to find a veterinarian, Locatelli said.

Locatelli started driving but the pepper spray on Sheeba hindered his driving, he said. He pulled over at a bus stop and asked a man there to drive his car to the Boulder Creek Veterinary Clinic at 12870 Highway 9.

The veterinarian tried to
treat her but she died on the table in Locatelli’s arms, he said.

“They shot my dog for no reason. She’s like my kid. I loved that dog,” said Locatelli.