Case Snapshot
Case ID: 1568
Classification: Shooting
Animal: dog (non pit-bull)
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Wednesday, Apr 30, 2003

County: Milwaukee

Disposition: Not Charged

Person of Interest: Aaron M. Malvick

A north side man filed a claim Tuesday against the city Tuesday, charging that a Milwaukee police officer recklessly killed his dog in May, shooting it nine times even though the animal was chained to a large tree in his backyard.

Jim Harsh said Trudi, a 5-year-old German shepherd, was in his yard in the 5500 block of N. 31st St. at 12:40 p.m. May 21 when the officer shot it. The officer, Aaron M. Malvick, was responding to a burglar alarm at the house next door, according to Harsh's claim.

According to the notice of claim, a precursor to filing suit against the city, Trudi was tied to a tree by a 19-foot stainless steel chain when Malvick, an 11-year veteran, fired at her.

"This whole thing stunk," said Harsh, who also filed a complaint with the city's Fire and Police Commission on Tuesday. The claim also alleges the Police Department refused to release an incident report about Trudi's shooting for 26 days.

Robert "Woody" Welch, chairman of the Fire and Police Commission, said he could not comment on a pending claim. Police Chief Arthur Jones did not return phone calls Tuesday.

Harsh is seeking $500,000 in compensatory and punitive damages from the city.

In 2001, the state Supreme Court ruled in the case of a Racine woman that pet owners can't recover damages for emotional distress after someone negligently kills their pets. Julie Rabideau sued the City of Racine after an off-duty police officer shot her Rottweiler, Dakota. The case was later settled for $2,500 in damages.


  • Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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