A contractor working on behalf of CenterPoint Energy, a power company, was caught on surveillance video striking two dogs with a wrench in Kingwood, Texas, March 23 (video below).
Homeowner and dog owner Mike Willcox posted the video on Facebook April 10.
"Honestly, I'm really upset; the fact that he stepped into our backyard like that and he was swinging to kill, swinging to kill my family pets," Willcox told KPRC. "It just made me wonder how many other times that guy's done that."
Willcox said that one of the dogs, Flash, had a concussion, a cut under the eye and a lost tooth, and will have to undergo surgery.
The contractor's boss, David Mimum, head of Star Corporation, asserted that the family turned the dogs on the worker because of an earlier incident, which Willcox denies.
Mimum insisted that the worker was defending himself.
Willcox told KHOU that he and his family didn't know the contractor was coming to their home.
The worker walked through the family's front yard, continued on the property past a "Beware of Dog" sign and through an open fence door that Willcox said was for some landscapers. The worker was swinging his wrench at the dogs less than 20 seconds later near the pool.
According to Willcox, the contractor handed his wife a disconnect notice and refused to give his name.
Willcox admitted that he became combative after watching the contractor swing the wrench at one of his dogs a second time when walking back through the yard.
Officials at CenterPoint Energy told KHOU that their employees and contractors are trained to retreat instead of engaging in conflict with animals.
The dogs survived the wrench attacks, but Willcox racked up about $2,000 in vet bills.
CenterPoint Energy said in a statement April 11:
Like many of those we heard from today, we were disappointed to see that a contractor working on our behalf hurt our customer's pets. We absolutely understand the reaction to these images. We must reiterate that CenterPoint Energy does not condone or tolerate the abuse of animals by anyone.
We have launched an investigation internally. The contract company has assured us that they are also conducting a full investigation. We are reviewing our processes to ensure that we continue to respect customers’ property and pets. Thank you for your messages today.