An officer fatally shooting a black lab has resulted in the Coeur d’Alene Police Department receiving threatening calls and emails. 

On Thursday, authorities said they would not release the name of the officer who claimed he shot a “vicious” pit bull during a call on Wednesday. Coeur d’Alene PD leaders said they have received voicemails and emails threatening the officer. 

Leaders claimed the officer was distraught following the deadly shooting which has made  headlines from Los Angeles to London. 

Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Ron Clark said the shooting would be investigated and reviewed for policy and legal compliance.


The officer shot the two-year-old dog when he was responding to a call of a suspicious van near 8th  Street and Sherman Avenue.  When an officer approached the van with his gun drawn, the dog lunged out of the open driver’s side window according to Coeur d’Alene Police Department leaders. On Wednesday, the officer said the pit bull lunged at his face. Investigators said the officer fired one round from his service weapon and shot the dog in the chest. The dog later died.

The idea is anytime you use your firearm, it's only to be used during a time that your life or self is under great bodily harm or threat thereof. So that's the individual's decision. We train them to only use their firearms during those conditions, so that's what we're looking at doing,” said Clark. 

Animal control officers originally identified the dog as a pit bull. A veterinarian later  identified the dog as a lab mix. 

The officer was not placed on administrative leave as of Thursday evening.