Monday, May 5 2014 6:16 PM EDT2014-05-05 22:16:15 GMT
There's been quite the controversy, especially on social media, since a Sulphur police officer shot and killed a 14-month-old dog while on duty last week. "Our employees and our police department, they'reMore >
There's been quite the controversy, especially on social media, since a Sulphur police officer shot and killed a 14-month-old dog while on duty last week.More >
Friday, May 2 2014 8:16 PM EDT2014-05-03 00:16:12 GMT
The Sulphur police officer under investigation for fatally shooting a dog has a history of running into trouble on the job. More >
The Sulphur police officer under investigation for fatally shooting a dog has a history of running into trouble on the job.More >
SULPHUR, LA (KPLC) -
Sulphur residents are still in shock after a Sulphur police officer shot a dog Monday morning, claiming self-defense.
"When I first heard about the incident, it made me cry," said Sulphur resident Wendy Perez, who owns two dogs herself.
The killing has sparked an internal investigation, and in documents obtained by KPLC, officer Brian Thierbach has been at the center of investigations before.
According to his Department of Public Safety service record, Thierbach served nearly 10 years with the Louisiana State Police. The documents state Thierbach was involved in a shooting in a Lake Charles K-Mart parking lot in 2010. While the state shooting review board found Thierbach was justified in his actions leading up to the shooting, the report states he "accidentally discharged his firearm."
Thierbach was later "reprimanded," because "the altercation was not at the level to justify deadly force."
In April 2013, Thierbach was placed on administrative leave by state police, pending an investigation, saying he "posed a significant hazard to the efficiency of the public service," and that his conduct was "unbecoming of an officer."
It's not clear from the documents on what exactly led to the action, but three days after the notice was written, Thierbach resigned from the Louisiana State Police.
The Sulphur incident has since generated national attention. One resident who did not want to go on camera claims to be close to another Sulphur officer and said the public is being too harsh with the department as a whole when it was only one officer involved. Other residents said officers should be more compassionate toward dogs while on duty and are now keeping an extra eye on their own pets.
While KPLC found documents related to a troubled past as a state trooper, we also discovered commendations on Thierbach's part. In 2012, Thierbach was recognized by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Lafayette for helping to get violent offenders off the street and for his support of the Project Safe Neighborhoods program.
KPLC also asked state police about any other commendations or awards for service, but we have not received word yet.
Thierbach is on administrative, leave pending the outcome of the current investigation.
Sulphur Police spokesman Mel Estess isn't commenting on what happened but did tell us an internal investigation is under way. The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office is assisting in the investigation.
The story went national Tuesday night when The Huffington Post published a story detailing the incident through the eyes of two witnesses.
A Facebook page named for "Justice for Arzy" had over 5,000 likes on Friday. The change.org petition associated with the page is asking Sulphur Police Chief Lewis Coats to dismiss Thierbach. The petition had over 5,300 signatures by 6 p.m. on Friday.
Wednesday, September 3 2014 3:05 AM EDT2014-09-03 07:05:24 GMT
Police say a man taken into custody early Wednesday is a person of interest in three assaults at a Motel 6 in the Northland, and detectives are expected to question him about a quintuple shooting.More >
Police say a man taken into custody early Wednesday is a person of interest in three assaults at a Motel 6 in the Northland, and detectives are expected to question him about a quintuple shooting in south Kansas City.More >
Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:12 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:12:05 GMT
The World Food Program says it provided food to a record 4.1 million people inside Syria last month.More >
Islamic State extremists released a video Tuesday purportedly showing the beheading of a second American journalist, Steven Sotloff, and warning President Barack Obama that as long as U.S. airstrikes against the militant...More >
Tuesday, September 2 2014 4:42 PM EDT2014-09-02 20:42:09 GMT
Canadian police say pop star Justin Bieber has been charged with dangerous driving and assault after a collision between a minivan and an ATV led to a physical altercation in southwestern Ontario.More >
Canadian pop star Justin Bieber faces new charges after he was arrested for dangerous driving and assault following a collision between a minivan and an ATV that led to a physical altercation involving a photographer, his...More >