Askim is a gentle and loveable Golden Labrador cross who has many friends in both human and animal circles. Please visit Justice for Askim - RCMP gunshot victim:!/groups/330687910402736...

At approximately 10:45 pm on December 24, 2013, RCMP constables responded to a false complaint at Askim's home in Kamloops, B.C.  Askim was behind a closed door with his owner and her friend when the police pounded on the bedroom door causing Askim to bark.  The officers ordered Askim to be restrained.  Askim's owner's statement reports that two officers then grabbed her hair and forced her face down on the concrete floor, jamming their knees into her spine and breaking her nose.  She was clearly shaken and demanded to know why the police were doing this to her.   Askim was still being held by the friend in the bedroom with the door ajar, watching everything that transpired.  He was terrified and barking.   

The woman's father started down the stairs of the basement asking the RCMP what they were doing to his daughter. RCMP Officer Tobin who was standing at the stairs, told the father not to come down.  The father, hearing Askim's distress, called to the dog to "come."  Askim did as he was told.  As he ran past the officers who were sitting on his owner in an attempt to reach the father (and safety) up the stairs, Officer Tobin took aim and shot Askim point-blank in the head at approximately 11:00 pm.  

Debra, the mother of Askim's owner, arrived at the residence minutes after the shooting and proceeded to locate Askim.  Sgt. Peto, Officer Tobin and another officer were on the scene, but none of the officers had checked on Askim to determine if he was alive.  Debra followed the trail of blood to the bed that Askim was cowering under.  The dog was shaking and terrified. Every movement he made caused blood to spray out of his head wounds.  

Debra pleaded with Sgt Peto to allow her to take Askim to a vet for emergency medical attention.  Sgt. Peto refused.  He told Debra that the Animal Control office had been called and she would have to wait until they arrived.  Debra was crying and tried to comfort Askim.  During the next two hours, Debra continued to plead with Sgt. Peto to allow her to take Askim to a vet and questioned why it was taking the Animal Control personnel so long to respond.  Sgt Peto continued to refuse Debra's pleas telling her Animal Control had been contacted.

The Animal Control officer arrived at approximately 2:00 am - 3 hours after the shooting.  Askim was then taken to a clinic but his condition had declined so badly that the vet feared for the dog's survival.  The vet told Debra he could only provide pain meds and antibiotics because the Animal Control would not permit an x-ray to determine the extent of the internal damage.  Askim was then taken to the Kamloops pound where he has remained in a tiny cell. He bled for days from his open wounds, cried in pain, and was seen living in his own feces, increasing his risk of a secondary infection.   On January 3rd, after considerable public pressure, Askim was permitted a second vet appointment to treat the severe infection that had caused his jaw, neck and ear to swell.   John Wilson from the Kamloops pound has stated he has had to wait for the RCMP statements before determining Askim's fate.

Sgt Edward Peto stated to the media that Officer Tobin took immediate leave and wasn't available to provide a statement. This is false.  Any time an RCMP officer uses force, whether it is pepper spray - a taser - or a gun, that officer is bound under the Use of Force Legislation to fill out Use of Force forms immediately following the incident.  This officer, by his own admission, is also responsible for the shooting of another dog.  

John Wilson has stated that Askim is known to Kamloops Animal Control personnel to be a gentle natured dog and has caused no concern for them during his incarceration.  In fact, Kamloops Animal Control personnel had to attend an incident on October 10, 2013, in which Askim was attacked by a neighbour's dog.  Askim did not inflict any wounds on the offending dog but he did endure 30 minutes of being bitten repeatedly and having the flesh torn from his hind limbs.   RCMP Sgt. Peto has reported to the media that Askim behaved aggressively toward Officer Tobin causing Tobin to shoot the dog. Given the history of this very docile canine, the RCMP's allegation that Askim had acted aggressive in any way is a feeble attempt to justify the unwarranted use of deadly force.

The RCMP's cruelty and inhumanity toward Askim is incomprehensible. There was no reason to shoot Askim.  He did not growl, lunge or attack. He merely tried to escape the traumatic events that the RCMP had created inside of his home when they chose to storm into the residence and take a "Shoot first, ask questions later" attitude. The officer who pulled the trigger acted in an irresponsible and dangerous manner.  An officer who so easily loses control of a situation with fellow officers in attendance should have his badge under review.  Tobin used lethal force inside a family residence putting all of the occupants at risk without just cause. To shoot Askim, Tobin had to fire his weapon in the direction of Askim's owner which put her life and that of his fellow officers at risk.  This officer is a true risk to the public safety.

John Wilson from the Kamloops Animal Control has stated that his office was not contacted by the RCMP until December 25th at 12:50 am -  two hours after the shooting, proving Sgt. Peto's initial claims to Debra that Animal Control had been contacted were false.  The Animal Control officer who attended the residence at 2:00 am (three hours after the shooting) arrived in the truck used to retrieve expired animals.  The RCMP had led the Animal Control officer to believe Askim was already dead.   Was this the RCMP's plan all along?  If they waited long enough to call Animal Control for assistance the dog would bleed out and there would be no questions asked?  The citizens of British Columbia expect the RCMP to conduct themselves with integrity; to be honest and above reproach. Sgt. Peto and Officer Tobin owe an explanation to the residents of B.C. for their questionable actions and statements.

Askim and his family have suffered grievously at the hands of the RCMP. The public will not allow this matter to be brushed aside.  The Kamloops RCMP and the the Heffley Creek detachment where Officer Tobin is stationed must be held accountable for their officers' actions and misconduct during the course of this incident, by an independent body capable of bringing a satisfactory resolution and closure to this matter.

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