Case Snapshot
Case ID: 19647
Classification: Shooting
Animal: dog (non pit-bull)
More cases in King County, WA
More cases in WA
Abuse was retaliation against animal's bad behavior
Login to Watch this Case

New features are coming soon. Login with Facebook to get an early start and help us test them out!



Images for this Case

For more information about the Interactive Animal Cruelty Maps, see the map notes.



Saturday, Mar 31, 2012

County: King

Charges: Felony CTA
Disposition: Alleged
Case Images: 1 files available

Alleged: Steven William Cole

A 49-year-old Kent man has been charged with first-degree animal cruelty by King County prosecutors for allegedly shooting a neighbor's dachshund in the leg with a pellet gun for reportedly "crapping" on his property.

First degree animal cruelty is a Class C felony, which is punishable by five years in prison, a $10,000 fine or both if convicted. Cole could also be banned from owning animals.

Prosecutors charged Steven William Cole on Monday after an investigation of the March 31 incident by a Regional Animal Services of King County officer.

Court records list the Kent School District as Cole's employer. Cole works for the district as a painter with the maintenance department, said Chris Loftis, school district spokesman.

Cole is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday, May 24 at the Norm Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. A summons was issued directing Cole to appear in court. Cole has no known criminal history, according to charging papers.

The incident occurred in the 29800 block of 159th Lane Southeast in unincorporated Kent, south of Covington.

A neighbor of Cole's reported to the King County Sheriff's Office that Cole shot her dog Zeus, a 7-year-old dachshund, as she and her children were planting a tree in their front yard, according to charging papers.

The woman told a deputy she heard a pop and then heard her dog yelp. She said her dog was about 2 feet off the easement that separates her property from Cole's. She looked toward Cole's house and saw him in a front window laughing.

She took the dog to the Sumner Animal Hospital where an X-ray showed a pellet had entered the dog's leg and fractured it in several places. The vet removed the pellet and put the leg in a cast.

Cole admitted to the deputy to owning a high-powered pellet rifle with a scope that he used to shoot rabbits on his property. He said he saw the dog "crapping" on his property and admitted to shooting the dog. He said he was tired of asking his neighbors to keep the dog off of his property. He admitted to aiming for the dog's body when he shot it.

The woman told an animal control officer that she has had dog issues in the past with Cole.

Cole remains employed by the school district.

"For incidents and accusations of wrongdoing outside job responsibilities and off district property there is a test under Washington law to determine whether the alleged misconduct of school staff not related to their duties impacts their ability to effectively and safely serve students and the public," said Loftis, the school district spokesman, in an email. "If such a determination is made, then the district would take appropriate administrative steps. At this point, that process has not been initiated and we are assuming the staff person will continue to work while his legal challenges move through the court system."

Loftis said citizens are presumed innocent until proven guilty and "facts proven during the court process and/or the eventual resolution of the case will help us determine if any further action is needed from the district."

References

« WA State Animal Cruelty Map
« More cases in King County, WA

Note: Classifications and other fields should not be used to determine what specific charges the suspect is facing or was convicted of - they are for research and statistical purposes only. The case report and subsequent updates outline the specific charges. Charges referenced in the original case report may be modified throughout the course of the investigation or trial, so case updates, when available, should always be considered the most accurate reflection of charges.

For more information regarding classifications and usage of this database, please visit the database notes and disclaimer.