In a heartbreaking incident that has shocked the Ohio community, a police officer from the Lorain Police Department, Elliott Palmer, is facing calls for termination after fatally shooting a loose golden retriever in front of the distressed family. The incident, which occurred on Sunday, was captured on Palmer’s own bodycam footage.
Following the tragic event, Palmer has been placed on leave, as reported by WKYC on Friday. The department has confirmed that the incident is currently under investigation, although no further details were provided at the time of reporting, according to The Post.
The outrage over the shooting led to a “Justice for Dixie” rally being organized outside the police department. During the rally, Lt. Jacob Morris expressed condolences to Dixie’s grieving family, acknowledging the pain they are experiencing. He stated, “Regardless of the situation, they’re dealing with the loss of a family member. It hurts to even say that we were involved in that, but with that being said, we can offer our condolences—and we certainly, certainly do. I’ve spoken to the family and (am) trying to be a resource for them as the investigative process rolls out.”
According to previous reports from WKYC, Palmer was patrolling the area when he noticed several large dogs running around and requested that the owner, Tammie Kern, regain control over them. As Kern’s daughter attempted to round up the dogs, Dixie managed to escape and playfully ran toward Palmer, who responded by shooting her multiple times.
The shocking incident was recorded by Palmer’s bodycam. The footage captured Palmer standing in the street outside Kern’s home on Oberlin Avenue, with a different golden retriever approaching him in a playful manner. The officer attempted to wave the dog away, but moments later, Dixie followed suit, calmly running toward Palmer. In response, Palmer raised his gun and shot her.
Here’s the bodycam footage (Warning: Graphic Content)
Dixie desperately tried to escape, but her front legs eventually gave out, causing her to fall face-first in the middle of the street. With remarkable determination, the young dog dragged herself to safety by moving her back legs across the ground until she reached the curb, where she lay helplessly on the sidewalk.
The heart-wrenching scene was filled with sorrow and anger, as Kern confronted the officer, exclaiming, “You stupid f–k, you killed my dog. Why did you do it?” Palmer responded with an annoyed tone, ordering Kern to back away and stating that the dog charged at him. Kern passionately argued that Dixie was harmless and was merely crossing the street when the incident occurred.
Palmer called for backup as more people emerged from the home, demanding answers about what had happened to the dog. Kern could be heard screaming in grief on the ground, while others tried to console her, all while Dixie lay a few feet away, helpless and dying.
Kern expressed her belief that Palmer should lose his job and be held accountable for his actions. She recounted how, after the initial shot, Palmer should have allowed them to retrieve the dog and seek medical treatment. However, he continued to shoot Dixie three more times, despite her attempting to find safety.
Since the tragic shooting, local communities have united in demanding Palmer’s release from duty and termination from the police department. The movement gained momentum through a MoveOn.org petition and the hashtag #JusticeforDixie, which highlight the peaceful nature of the dog and emphasize the need for justice and resolution for Dixie and her family.
Social media has also been flooded with criticism of Palmer, labeling him a “coward” and urging the revocation of his badge. Some individuals expressed outrage over Palmer’s reported claim of fear when Dixie approached him. One Facebook user, Kristine Duffin, wrote in a Lorain, Ohio group, “Claims he was afraid for his life! But had his hand out calling the first dog to him, then poor Dixie probably thought: ‘Oh hey, this is a nice guy, I’m gonna go say hi.’ Poor baby had no clue she was gonna be shot dead.”
In response to the incident, the Lorain Police Department released a statement on Monday, acknowledging that Palmer had “used force” against Dixie and stating that the incident was under investigation. The department’s Office of Professional Standards has been assigned to conduct a thorough inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the use of force, as outlined in the statement.
Kern and her family intend to pursue legal action against the police department, according to WKYC. The tragic loss of Dixie has ignited a powerful response from the community, demanding accountability and justice for the innocent dog and her devastated family.