Dallas Police are asking the public for help in identifying an unknown man that approached a group of children with their dog, said ‘sorry,’ and then shot the dog in the face.
Genola Vance had asked her son and nephews, three boys aged 5 to 9, to take out the garbage. Joined by Vance’s dog, Nolan, a 9-year old black Lab, the kids were standing near the apartment complex’s trash bin on February 28 when an unidentified male approached them.
That’s when the suspect, identified by Dallas Police as an African-American man in a black hoodie wearing a backpack, walked up to the group and apologized before shooting Nolan in the face and fleeing on foot.
Vance told WFAA the boys came running inside yelling, “someone shot Nolan!” They told Vance the man just looked at them, said ‘sorry’ and shot him. “He ran by me into the house and there was blood everywhere,” Vance explained.
Vance contacted Dallas Police, but they were unable to locate the suspect.
Nolan was rushed to VCA Metroplex Animal Hospital for emergency surgery. The bullet entered through the front of his mouth and exited through his jaw, breaking it. Veterinarians were able to stabilize the 9-year old rescue dog and he’s expected to make a full, albeit long and painful, recovery. The local SPCA paid the $7,000 veterinary bill for Nolan’s surgery.
“We chose Nolan out of every dog at the shelter,” Vance told the news station. “He’s like my son. I love my kids and I love him the same.” She doesn’t know why someone would shoot her dog but believes Nolan may have saved her kids’ lives when he followed them outside. “I think if Nolan wouldn’t have run outside, maybe this man would have shot one of the kids. He took a bullet for my family.”
The unidentified shooter is still at large. Once found, he’ll be charged with ‘Cruelty to Non-Livestock Animals – Torture.’ The Dallas Police Department is requesting anyone with information to please contact Crime Stoppers 877-373-8477 or Detective H. Tame with the Animal Cruelty Unit at 214-671-0115.