Kenneth Wayne Flynn, a former Fort Worth police deputy, escaped indictment last Wednesday.
Flynn fatally shot a German Shepherd on Sept. 29 after he was told the dog had killed his cat.
He retired from the force on Oct. 31 after being charged with animal cruelty, but the Tarrant County grand jury killed the charge.
“We’re glad the grand jury took a careful look at the case and correctly applied Texas law that allows an individual to kill a dangerous dog that’s just attacked one of their cats,” Robert Rogers, Flynn’s defense lawyer, told the Star-Telegram.
The owner of the dog, who only agreed to be identified as "Bryan," was disappointed in the grand jury's decision, which he felt was influenced because Flynn was a cop.
According to the Star Telegram, Flynn originally told three police officers that he was not involved in the shooting, but later admitted that he shot the dog with his police gun. Flynn got a call from his wife that their cat was dead and their neighbor claimed to have seen a German Shepherd standing over the cat's carcass.
Texas law does allow someone to kill a dog or coyote that has attacked a domestic animal:
Sec. 822.013. DOGS OR COYOTES THAT ATTACK ANIMALS. (a) A dog or coyote that is attacking, is about to attack, or has recently attacked livestock, domestic animals, or fowls may be killed by:
(1) any person witnessing the attack; or
(2) the attacked animal's owner or a person acting on behalf of the owner if the owner or person has knowledge of the attack.
(b) A person who kills a dog or coyote as provided by this section is not liable for damages to the owner, keeper, or person in control of the dog or coyote.
Bryan claimed that his German Shepherd and pit bull escaped from his fenced backyard because his roommate left a gate open. After Flynn found the dog in a vacant lot, he shot and killed it.
“If the dog was in his yard and actually killed his cat, then maybe he would have had the right to shoot it,” Bryan told the Star-Telegram. “But the fact that he chased him down in his truck and shot him and drove away and didn’t report it, that makes it a completely different thing.”
In another odd turn, the Fort Worth police officers who responded to the shooting did not tell their supervisors or make an offense report, according to court papers.
“The investigation into the actions of the responding officers is still ongoing,” said Fort Worth Police spokeswoman Natosha Tucker.