Police: Man not facing charges for killing dog in Nashville park
Metro Parks rules require dogs to be on a leash, but Marian Andreescu said Percy Warner is the perfect place for off-leash service dog training.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Metro Parks Police is stepping up patrols to crack down on dogs walking off-leash after a man shot and killed a German Shepherd on Wednesday afternoon at Percy Warner Park.
Metro Police said the man, who said he feared for his life, will not face charges for shooting the off-leash dog because state law allows anyone with a permit to have a gun in a park. That supersedes a Metro Parks rule banning weapons in all public spaces.
People out for their daily walks on Thursday said they are still trying to process what happened and are taking steps to protect themselves and their animals.
“I was surprised and shocked,” David Weinstein said. “We walk in the park every day. We see dogs off-leash. We’ve never really had a bad experience with an aggressive dog.”
Weinstein and others told WSMV4 they try to stay aware of their surroundings and keep their dogs close.
Metro Parks rules require dogs to be on a leash, but Marian Andreescu said Percy Warner is the perfect place for off-leash service dog training. He lets his dog roam free in quiet areas of the park.
“I’ve seen a lot of dogs off-leash in this park,” Andreescu said. “Usually, the owners that have dogs off leash aren’t the owners that allow their dogs to be aggressive towards people. Otherwise, that wouldn’t be happening. It’s a bit shocking.”
While Metro Parks Police said it doesn’t track leash violations, officers are prepared to issue citations. However, they normally just give verbal warnings when they see a dog off leash and said people almost always comply.
Park walker Kristine Donahue said she would like to see the state gun laws change so people are not allowed to have weapons in the park. Currently, the only reason a permit holder is required to put a gun away is if children are present as part of a school activity.
“That makes me so concerned,” Donahue said. “I had no idea about this rule. I can’t imagine it makes sense to have a gun while you are walking in a state park. It doesn’t make any sense to me.”
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