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Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly ...

kenny

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... I hear I a pop sound about 30 feet in front of me a squirrel immediately falls out of a tree.
I stand there for a few seconds to process what I had just seen.

Now, we don't live out in the country or even in a rural or semi-rural area.
We live in the what I'd call a suburb in middle of a major metropolitan area with millions of residents.
The houses here are densely-packed on 5,000 sq foot lots.
Shooting a gun towards the street has to be illegal, and I'm pretty sure killing critters is too.

The squirrel was still alive, squirming on its back, struggling, dying from a head wound.
Instead of chatting with 'Rambo" I decide to cross the street and keep walking.
Another neighbor Tim, and his friend Hank, happened to be right across the street.

Tim and Hank cross the street to look at the squirrel and Tim tells Rambo. "Hey the squirrel isn't dead. Go get a shovel and put him out of his misery."
Thirty seconds later Tim calls out, "Don't bother. It's dead now."

Rambo has trees in his front yard that grow food that he eats.
He keeps them covered with a net to keep birds out.
I assume the squirrels were getting in and eating "his" food.
(This is confirmed later when Tim told me that Rambo volunteered that 'reason' for shooting the squirrel.)
What a freak coincidence this transpired right in front of me.

When I got home I called the police ... not 911, just their regular switchboard.
They take a report and ask whether I saw the gun.
I said no.

They said they will send a car out and officers will talk to me.
I tell them I don't want Rambo seeing the police car in front of my house, so please send the car over to a nearby location and I'll meet them.
They say fine, and they'll call when the squad car is on its way.

While I'm waiting I take a little walk to do some things, get Rambo's exact address, look for blood evidence on the ground to relay to the police, and talk to Tim and another witness.

I knock on Tim's door to tell him I'm about to meet with the police and ask him whether he wants to also talk to them or just stay out of this.
He said, "Oh no. I support whatever gets this guy to learn he can't just shoot his gun towards the street in the middle of the city."
He could accidentally hit someone and since he's two doors down that someone may be my kid.

I ask Tim if he saw the gun since this seems this is key to how the police handle this.
He says, "No but his friend Hank did. Hank already left left but I have his phone number if the police want to contact him as a witness."
Tim gives me Hank's last name for the police.

I do the same with another neighbor who I saw witnessed this.
She said she does not want to talk to the police because her husband is very pro gun and has lots of guns and this would blow up.
(Boy, ain't that another thread in itself?)

I meet the police, tell them everything.
Again they ask if I saw the gun.
I said, "No, but so what? How often do you hear a pop and immediately see a squirrel fall (onto soft mulch not on the sidewalk) from a tree right in front of you with a head wound?"
They said if I didn't see the gun then they are going to just turn this over to our city's animal control department.
I'm incredulous, and a bit pissed a this point, so I ask them, "Aren't you going to at least talk to this guy?" but again I don't want to argue with two guys with guns so I return home.
I sit there and stew. :angryfire:

Soon Animal Control calls me, and a police sergeant who works there interviews me.
Hmm, maybe this will get results after all.
I tell her everything including what I believe is evidence ... the exact location of a 6-inch blood stain on the ground.
Also the blood stain location proves Rambo shot the squirrel from a tree planted on city property, not his private property.
Also I tell them to look in his trash and I'll bet you'll find a cardboard box containing a dead squirrel with a round in it's head.
I give the contact info for those other two witnesses, one of which saw the weapon.
The sergeant assures me this is a very big deal and they are getting right out there to investigate.

A couple hours later Tim calls and says Animal Control called him and they are on their way out to (likely) arrest our village idiot.
Soon after I hear a siren.

I am not making this up because of current threads about gun control, nor am I embellishing anything.
Just the facts, Ma'am.

What a day.
 

redwood66

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Sorry this happened to you. I yelled at our former neighbor for shooting at birds near my horse barn.

I can offer a thought though. If you only heard one pop and the squirrel dropped dead on the sidewalk area, the guy is a pretty good shot if he was on his property. If the pop was not very loud it was likely a pellet gun.
 

AGBF

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I am so sorry, kenny. I am very sorry (for myself) that I read this. I cannot bear to read about cruelty to animals and would have spared myself if I had had any idea at all what was coming. I would feel so impotent if I were in your place. I would want to kill those idiots, just kill them. That squirrel didn't harm anyone and no one needed to eat him to survive. It is just unbearable as well as being (as you pointed out) an incredible public safety hazard. I really have nothing to say except that I am in tears. Again: I am sorry.

Deb
 

lulu

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

People vary and some are asshats. I grow flowers, vegetables and fruit with the understanding that I will be sharing with wildlife.
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

redwood66|1452476345|3973928 said:
Sorry this happened to you. I yelled at our former neighbor for shooting at birds near my horse barn.

I can offer a thought though. If you only heard one pop and the squirrel dropped dead on the sidewalk area, the guy is a pretty good shot if he was on his property. If the pop was not very loud it was likely a pellet gun.
Yeah, later in the day when Tim called me he told me Rambo told him he was 'shocked he actually hit the varmint this time'.
Rambo volunteered to Tim that he'd shot at them many times in his front yard, but never hit one.

Tim knows about guns and, unlike me, walked up to the dying squirrel and got a good look.
Tim said Rambo told him it was a $30 BB rifle gun from WalMart that can be pumped up so many times that it has 'stopping power' of a 22 calibre rifle.

Tim told me the head wound looked much larger than any BB gun, that he knew of, could produce.

AFAIC, BB, pellet or AK-47 or Sherman Tank ... you DON'T shoot them into the streets of a crowded city.
 

packrat

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

An asshat w/a gun who should not have one. :rolleyes: Should be taken away from him and he should be fined.

ETA no, nothing should be shot w/in city limits. It's illegal here, is it not elsewhere?
 

House Cat

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

We have lived this too, only we had to call fish and game because the police wouldn't touch it and we knew squirrels have a proper hunting season. Not only was our idiot shooting into my yard, dropping dead animals into my yard, and hunting within city limits, he was poaching!

People like this..... :angryfire:
 

KaeKae

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Well....wow.

Thank you, Kenny, for following through on this. I am in total support of every move you made.
 

Queenie60

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Kenny - I am sorry you had to witness this. I too would have called the police and animal control. Rambo should be fined and have jail time for what he did. What a heartless person. "There's not standing room in hell for someone like him." :angryfire:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Poor squirrel :blackeye:

Thank you for following through on this. :((
 

VRBeauty

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Good job Kenny. Thanks for sticking to your guns ;)) and for making sure the cops had something to work with.
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Thanks guys.

It was hard for me to do this today.
There's a code that you just don't rat on people.

Today I did.
 

missy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Poor squirrel. ;(

Kenny, thank you for doing everything you did about this horrible incident and like KaeKae that was what I would have done as well.
I don't think the code you speak of about ratting out others apply here because you are protecting other people and animals from someone who can be dangerous and is clearly breaking the law. This "Rambo" person either has very bad judgment or another serious problem and he has shown that he is a danger to other living beings. It doesn't sound like "Rambo" is a very good shot either so it was fortunate that he never hit a child or adult with past "target" practices. Thank you for taking control and doing what you could here.

Like Deb I am sorry I clicked onto the thread but appreciate what you did Kenny.
 

momhappy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Did you ever find out what type of gun they shot? I would like to assume that it was some sort of pellet gun, air rifle, etc., but there are some stupid people out there, so you never know.
How awful to witness that :(sad I don't like that the squirrels terrorize my bird feeders, dig up some of my flowers, etc., but I would never, ever harm them in any way. Keep us posted on any updates, kenny, and I'm sorry that happened to you.
 

kmarla

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I'm really sorry that happened, but good for you Kenny and the way you handled it! It's not everyone who's willing to go the extra mile to do the right thing.
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

momhappy|1452518339|3974122 said:
Did you ever find out what type of gun they shot?
Yes I did find out.
Since "Tim" lives 2 doors down from Rambo they are close.
After all this happened Rambo told Tim that he used a $30 BB rifle from WalMart that is of a new design.
Apparently what's new is you can pump it up to higher pressures than any previous design.

He claims that even though it's only a BB gun pumping it up that much gives it the 'stopping power' of a 22 calibre.

Thanks all for the support.
I was feeling a little bad when I found out he may be arrested.

Tim called me last night and he doesn't yet know whether Rambo was arrested but police cars showed up and they searched his front and back yard for evidence.
That's all I know now.
 

redwood66

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

kenny|1452477638|3973944 said:
redwood66|1452476345|3973928 said:
Sorry this happened to you. I yelled at our former neighbor for shooting at birds near my horse barn.

I can offer a thought though. If you only heard one pop and the squirrel dropped dead on the sidewalk area, the guy is a pretty good shot if he was on his property. If the pop was not very loud it was likely a pellet gun.
Yeah, later in the day when Tim called me he told me Rambo told him he was 'shocked he actually hit the varmint this time'.
Rambo volunteered to Tim that he'd shot at them many times in his front yard, but never hit one.

Tim knows about guns and, unlike me, walked up to the dying squirrel and got a good look.
Tim said Rambo told him it was a $30 BB rifle gun from WalMart that can be pumped up so many times that it has 'stopping power' of a 22 calibre rifle.

Tim told me the head wound looked much larger than any BB gun, that he knew of, could produce.

AFAIC, BB, pellet or AK-47 or Sherman Tank ... you DON'T shoot them into the streets of a crowded city.

Well he is an idiot then. At least you know that now.
 

Rockinruby

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Kenny, I'm sorry this happened to you. I'm glad you reported it. :wavey:
 

chrono

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I would report it too, Kenny, but knowing the justice system, even if arrested, he'd probably be released with only a slap on the wrist.
 

redwood66

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Chrono|1452534845|3974265 said:
I would report it too, Kenny, but knowing the justice system, even if arrested, he'd probably be released with only a slap on the wrist.
So to make this interesting~

What would posters here on PS suggest - if they were the deciding entity - to do to such a person? By no means is this a knock at you Chrono. I am truly interested to see people's views of appropriate punishment. This seems to be a good "crime" to discuss that would not turn into a brawl about murder, drugs, or other "violent" crimes. Rather a discussion on what someone deems to be appropriate for such an act.

Of course we could make a new thread to not muck up kenny's if you like.
 

momhappy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I'm guessing that there might be some sort of misdemeanor charge for firing a weapon within city limits (if he was in fact within city limits), but other than that, I can't see much happening here in terms of punishment. There could be some sort of animal cruelty violation or depending on the state, it might even be illegal to kill squirrel, but again, the charge is probably pretty minimal.
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

redwood66|1452535298|3974268 said:
Chrono|1452534845|3974265 said:
I would report it too, Kenny, but knowing the justice system, even if arrested, he'd probably be released with only a slap on the wrist.
So to make this interesting~

What would posters here on PS suggest - if they were the deciding entity - to do to such a person? By no means is this a knock at you Chrono. I am truly interested to see people's views of appropriate punishment. This seems to be a good "crime" to discuss that would not turn into a brawl about murder, drugs, or other "violent" crimes. Rather a discussion on what someone deems to be appropriate for such an act.

Of course we could make a new thread to not muck up kenny's if you like.
I welcome the discussion, not a muck up at all.

If the question is what punishment is appropriate for this crime I'd say a rather large fine of say $5,000 but no jail time for first offense.
Any guns he owns should be confiscated and he forfeits his "constitutional right" to bear arms by being added to a list every gun seller must access before selling a gun.
Yes even gun shows and private sellers at garage sales, eBay, Craigslist etc.

$10,000 fine if any seller sells a gun to someone on the no-gun list.
 

missy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

kenny said:
redwood66|1452535298|3974268 said:
Chrono|1452534845|3974265 said:
I would report it too, Kenny, but knowing the justice system, even if arrested, he'd probably be released with only a slap on the wrist.
So to make this interesting~

What would posters here on PS suggest - if they were the deciding entity - to do to such a person? By no means is this a knock at you Chrono. I am truly interested to see people's views of appropriate punishment. This seems to be a good "crime" to discuss that would not turn into a brawl about murder, drugs, or other "violent" crimes. Rather a discussion on what someone deems to be appropriate for such an act.

Of course we could make a new thread to not muck up kenny's if you like.
I welcome the discussion, not a muck up at all.

If the question is what punishment is appropriate for this crime I'd say a rather large fine of say $5,000 but no jail time for first offense.
His gun should be confiscated and he forfeits his "constitutional right" to bear arms.
Community service and fine for the first offense. Jail time if there is a second offense. And I agree completely about forfeiting the " constitutional right" to ever bear arms again.
 

momhappy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I would think that an appropriate punishment would be a moderate fine. It really depends on the laws where he lives - what is the law in regards to where you can shoot BB guns (within city limits? within how many feet of neighbors? etc.), Is it illegal to shoot squirrels?, do you need some sort of small game hunting license and if so can you shoot squirrel in a certain season or year-round?
The two big concerns I would have with this is A)The safety of other people & animals in the neighborhood and B)animal cruelty
Shooting a squirrel with a BB gun is pretty cruel because although some BB guns can be quite powerful, they are more likely to wound an animal rather than kill it, which prolongs suffering (which I would consider animal cruelty)
 

partgypsy

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

About 10, 15 years ago my brother was hanging out with his girlfriend's dog, a small white fluffy dog (named baby) on the driveway of my Mom's suburban house when suddenly the dog started yipping in pain and bleeding. Had been shot (bb or pellet gun). My brother carried it inside and then took it to the vet so it could be stitched up. We knew who it was, 2 boys who had gotten guns for Christmas as we could hear them shooting in their backyard earlier. They had to shoot from their backyard across our backyard between two houses to make the shot. We reported it and a policeman went over to talk to them, but I don't think anything of consequence happened. My brother was lucky he wasn't hit.
 

Paz

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

kenny|1452499109|3974060 said:
Thanks guys.

It was hard for me to do this today.
There's a code that you just don't rat on people.

Today I did.
You stood up for an innocent animal, and for anyone else who may have been hit by this guys stray bbs/bullets. You done good! :appl:

Totally random, but I had to chuckle at the names in your story... two of cats are named Timmy & Rambo. :cheeky:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

I could see feeling bad Kenny. But honestly it was very courageous of you to see this through.

It's not just about *this* squirrel - is all the ones you possibly saved by doing this - and how many people and other animals you potentially protected.

As far as what he should get:

If first offense

1. $500 fine - maybe even $1,000. I'm not sure. It should hurt, it should be enough to be taken seriously.
2. Mandatory educational course on animal cruelty
3. Animal cruelty charges

If this was not the first offense, a higher fine, and definitely jail time. And again, something educational or some kind of mental assessment / evaluation with a therapist. Maybe he's just detached, or maybe he's a nut in the making. And/or maybe he can be helped.

How old is this guy, Kenny?
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

Sorry bout copying the names of your cats. :oops:
FWIW, all names in this thread were not their real names.

Rambo appears to be in his 60s.

I've lived down the block from him over 15 years and have spoken with him a few times.
Seemed like a nice enough guy.
 

kenny

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

CJ2008|1452545529|3974381 said:
I could see feeling bad Kenny. But honestly it was very courageous of you to see this through.
Thanks.

My SO was not happy.
He says, "Don't get involved."
 

Paz

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Re: Today I was walking our dogs on the sidewalk & suddenly

kenny|1452545827|3974383 said:
Sorry bout copying the names of your cats. :oops:
FWIW, all names in this thread were not their real names.
I found it quite amusing Kenny, so no worries! :lol:

My Rambo charges headfirst into stupid and slightly dangerous situations, thus his name. :devil: Timmy is a sweetie, who watches his brother's antics with bemusement. :???:

As to your SO telling you to stay out of it, NO. It's keeping silent on things like this that leads to people feeling bold enough to discharge larger weapons! What if he decides to grab a larger caliber to shoot a raccoon that is in his yard? How would you or your SO feel if the next time a person is hit with a stray bullet?

You did the right thing. Stand firm within yourself.
 
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