On Friday, April 18th at approximately 9:00pm Camden, New Jersy police officers were investigating a fight between two neighborhood teenagers that had happened earlier that day. At the very same time, four houses down, eight month old pit bull puppy Capone was slipping through an accidentally opened door at owners Sherronda Aycox’s home. Little did Capone know that in a few minutes he would be dead, thanks to the irresponsible and deplorable actions of one of Camdens’ “finest” boys in blue.
8 month old Capone
Sherronda Aycox describes her family’s 8-month-old blue pit bull as an indoor house dog who was friendly with neighborhood children. The dog, Capone, was headed toward the crowd of children he saw on his daily walks. “He was just trotting down the street and one officer pulled out his gun,” Aycox said.
“The cop said he felt like he was going to attack him,” said Aycox, “and he just shot at him. The one cop hollered ‘don’t shoot him’, but he shot him. When he shot him, the dog fell to the ground, was shaking and crying, but he just stood over top of him and kept shooting repeatedly.”
“He just came running out of the house,” said neighbor Kelly McCulley. “He plays with the kids all the time. He saw all the kids up there and that’s what he thought, that he was coming to play, and they just shot him over and over and over.”
Neighborhood children make memorial for beloved Capone
The dog was hit and fell in one area, but the bullets sprayed elsewhere, shooting out the window of a van that several women were getting ready to get into. The women say there were children everywhere.
Neighbors said they counted 33 rounds of bullets based on the police investigation on Saturday.
Neighbors say the dog was hit on one side of the street, but they found damage from police bullets on the other side of the street and several houses down. They say the officer’s bullets hit vehicles and even houses where there were innocent bystanders.
“For our community, we need the police to explain why it takes two clips for one dog,” said Kelly Lumpkin, who lives next door to David.
“We need to explain to children why the force needed to be so intense.
“I blame the police for using excessive force,” Lumpkin added. “Not for doing their job.”
Typically, Robert Corrales, spokesman for Mayor Dana Redd, said officers were trying to disperse a large crowd when an “aggressive” pit bull charged them.
UPDATE 4/19/11 – The Camden officers who sprayed bullets across a city neighborhood when they fired multiple rounds at a pit bull Friday have been placed on administrative duty while investigators review the bizarre shooting.