Springfield Police Officer Shoots Stray Dog, Family Wages Online War

An online petition calls on Attorney General Marty Jackley to investigate Springfield police officer Douglas Magee for shooting a dog.

In a two-page statement filed October 6, 2014, Officer Magee said that on July 19, 2014, around 3:30 p.m, he picked up an untagged and unhealthy looking dog running at large on Main Street.

(Note that Magee’s date appears to be an error; the subsequent discussion places the incident on September 21, 2014.)

Officer Magee tried unsuccessfully through the afternoon and evening to identify the owners. He observed fleas on the dog, and he knew that the private kennel to which the police usually take stray dogs would not accept an animal with fleas. That night, ten hours after picking up the dog, Officer Magee shot the dog twice and left the body in a cedar grove out in the country. In his statement, Officer Magee cites city ordinances on dangerous and diseased animals to justify his euthanizing the dog.

Mike Juhnke was Duke’s owner. Juhnke found out about the shooting and asked state’s attorney Lisa Rothschadl to look into the matter. Juhnke filed this statement:

Deputy Mark Maggs also filed a statement, mostly corroborating what Officer Magee said about the incident.

The states attorney handed the matter to the DCI, which apparently saw no need to take action against Officer Magee. Unsatisfied with that inaction, the Juhnkes have created a Facebook page and a GoFundMe page in addition to their Change.org petition to raise awareness of what they perceive as the unjustified killing of their dog by Springfield police.


50 Responses to Springfield Police Officer Shoots Stray Dog, Family Wages Online War

  1. larry kurtz

    Meaner than ol’ King Kong, cop shoots Juhnke yard dog….

  2. Robert Braun

    Something similar happened in Iowa back in 2006 and the police chief was arrested.

    http://wcfcourier.com/news/breaking_news/hamburg-police-chief-charged-with-animal-cruelty/article_eedabab9-4212-5826-b594-7c29eefe6112.html

    Here in Aberdeen a few years ago the cops shot and supposedly killed a vicious dog, nobody went looking for the body for a week and by then the dog walked out of the slough and was taken to a vet by a motorist.

  3. Mrs. Nelson

    This is very sad.

    I’m a very big animals lover, I run an rescue based out of Brown County. But I feel wishy washy on this. The dog wasn’t taken care of. But the dog did not have to be shot in a copse of trees and left to rot.

    There were lots of irresponsible choices made by both parties.

  4. Since when did it become protocol for a city police officer to shoot a dog and dump the body in somebody’s shelterbelt?

    What right does this irresponsible pet owner have to complain about when his poorly cared for flea-bitten dog is running loose around town, and he hasn’t reported it missing, and he doesn’t have tags on it, and it gets killed?

    Mrs. Nelson is right. Ijits on both sides of this one.

  5. With Keystone Cop Jackley on the case, don’t be surprised if his report indicates the hound propped the weapon on a tree and grabbed a stick to push the trigger and died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. That one worked before.

  6. Why was the dog out running loose? I’ll trust the cop on this.

  7. Nick Nemec

    Larry Kurtz wins the internet for today with the lead comment on this story.

  8. Bill Fleming

    Agreed, Nick. Cory needs a “like” button for his comments section.

  9. larry kurtz

    OTHELLO
    Oh, ay, as summer flies are in the shambles,
    That quicken even with blowing. O thou weed,
    Who art so lovely fair and smell’st so sweet
    That the sense aches at thee, would thou hadst ne’er been born!

    http://blog.seattlepi.com/marijuana/2015/08/09/researcher-shakespeares-pipes-had-been-used-for-cannabis-smoking/#14898101=0

  10. Deb Geelsdottir

    96 wins for funniest/most sarcastic comment.

  11. This is bizarre. I wish I could find the Springfield ordinance that this officer cites as the justification to “euthanize” (aka – I just gotta have a reason to shoot my gun) I wouldn’t necessarily call a flea bitten dog, diseased. Also, if indeed there is a Springfield ordinance to support this officers actions, I would assume (there I go again – assuming – dangerous) that there is a protocol for this department as to how to dispose of the animal once it has been destroyed. And I don’t think it states, “leave it where you shoot it”.

    That the dog was running loose and flea bitten, not good on the owners part at all. Not in the least. But the actions of this officer? sigh

    Reviewing the officers report is problematic on his justification for slaughtering it, er I mean, euthanizing it. In the last paragraph of his report, he cites two ordinances to justify his actions. These ordinances explicitly state that a dog described, as he describes it, should be euthanized immediately and should not be released. This officer drove around with this “dangerous dog” in his vehicle for almost an hour, released it (to help herd a calf), and then found it a bit later and put it BACK into his patrol car. Then again, drove around with it for quite a long period of time before ……..shooting it.

    it must not have been too contagious and diseased. and it must not have been that dangerous. this “case” has some issues. But more than likely, the officer will get a reprimand, and that will be the end of it.

  12. anybody that understands suicide realizes the lengths depressed persons take to end their own lives are bizarre and not understood by the ignorant (meaning we have been discussing for several years whether lay persons w/o benefit of autopsy report jackley has protected for apparent political purposes would satisfy 96).

    i am not defending jackley. our troops commit suicide at the rate of what, 22 a day? benda’s family will NEVER recover from this event if 96 keeps playing with it like a dead mouse.

  13. larry kurtz

    Deb, always funny 96 made the distinction of a cop shooting common cur but another one sparing a $2000 dog owned by a privileged white Republican physician/legislator, too.

  14. mike from iowa

    If the hound used a stick the police officer was fully within his rights to blast the flea-bitten varmint because his life could be considered in danger. Everyday cops are threatened with people’s personal I Ds,cell phones,fingers and gawd onliest knows what other weapons unarmed citizens and pooches may carry.

    I didn’t see anywhere in SD codified law on dangerous animals any right for a cop to determine to snuff an animal on his own,without being threatened by said animal.

  15. Nick Nemec

    Years ago the Highmore city cop took it on himself to shoot a dog that was habitually loose but was threatening no one other than pooping in the neighborhood lawns. There was some complaining at the time because the shooting followed a pattern of poor decision making and rash action on the part of this cop. He retained his job for the time being. A few years after the dog shooting he shot and killed his wife while she slept in her bed, beside one of their daughters.

    Bad decisions may form a pattern that should be documented.

  16. I have asked before but few have answered: who among you have not shot a neighbor’s dog?

  17. Nick Nemec

    I haven’t.

  18. Grudz, I have never shot a neighbor’s dog nor driven around with a neighbor’s dog in my backseat for a couple hours, dropped the dog off in a field while I chase livestock, then returned to find the dog waiting and willing to be picked up again later that evening.

  19. mike from iowa

    I shot two.One for chasing sheep when I was a teenager and one for chasing cattle in a feedyard. One survived,one didn’t. Neither ever chased livestock again. Both had owners that I knew and neither were flea bags. One belonged to the property next door and one had to travel several miles to have his fun. One was a junkyard dog,literally.

  20. Deb Geelsdottir

    The closest I’ve come to dog shooting is when our family dog on the farm got rabies. My siblings and I were fairly little, playing outside, when a rabid skunk showed up. Tag, a rough collie, went after the skunk to protect us. When he showed unmistakable signs of rabies, dad shot him.

    (Yeah, an Old Yeller kind of thing, and sad too.)

  21. To Grudznick – you said “….who among you have not shot a neighbor’s dog?” Let me just say that two wrongs never make a right. Any “bad” behavior exhibited by a dog, is not the dog’s fault but the owner’s fault, every time. Instead of taking the life of an innocent how about being an adult and contacting the neighbor about the issue? Do you shoot people who have done you wrong? Let me add, I live in Kentucky, and yes we have nuts here who do horrible things to dogs, cats, whatever, but again, that doesn’t make it right. I have a feeling that officer Magee is about to live his own personal hell by the time animal lovers across this country read this lying riddled story of his. I don’t care if his owners weren’t taking care of him, that didn’t give Magee the right to take it’s life. And why did he hide the body if he didn’t do anything wrong? Read between the lines to get the real story here. Mr. Magee comes off as “story teller”. My mother always taught us “if you’ll lie to me, you’ll steal from me.” I think you all have an officer who is in the wrong field of work.

  22. Thanks for covering this story but I am afraid you have many errors. First off, The family did not learn Duke was shot until June of this year. The cop lied to the family for over 8 months. Mike Juhnke file a complaint with Lisa Rothschal, the Bon Homme states attorney against the cop for DUMPING Duke the cop told the family he dumped Duke at a campground. Secondly, Duke was not flea and tick infested. That is just the excuse the cop is using to attempt to justify killing him. Duke had been to the vet not too long before he went missing from the yard. There is a heck of a lot more to this story than what was written here.

  23. Jan Juhnke

    From what I have been told by the lady who works at Springfield city finance Mayors office, officer Magee did not even admit his actions of killing Duke to them. He told them that he had dumped Duke at the campground also. They learned from the states attorney that their cop had killed Duke. I have the dispatch log for Sept 21st and Sept 22nd 2014. There is no log of office Magee picking up a dog, nor dumping a dog, not shooting a dog. In fact, the log places officer Magee at his home, out of service at the time he claims to have been in the country shooting Duke. A few of you made the comment that Duke was not well taken care of and running loose a lot. That is simply not true.

  24. The dig lived about 1 block from the pd and the officer had seen the animal at the residence on numerous occasions. The animal had just been to the vet recently and displayed no health issues. The officer lied for a long time about what happened to the animal. The dispatchers either kept poor records or the officer was flying under the radar to do this. This officer has been accused of inappropriate use of firearm by another citizen. The dog in photos did not appear unhealthy… excuse cop is using to justify unjustifiable actions

  25. What was wrong with the person that wrote this story? maybe they have a problem comprehending what they read? Hung over from the night before? To lazy to read the reports about Duke and get the facts right. Duke did not have fleas,The officer did not drive around with the dog in the car. Duke was a healthy,clean dog and the Officer knew his owner. I think this reporter needs to get the facts and right this story over.

  26. Jan Juhnke

    The officer claims he did not know who Duke belonged to. Duke lived a half a block from the police Dept. in a very small town. The officer had also been to Dukes home and seen Duke before.

    Duke had been to the vet and gotten his 2014-2015 rabies shots. The vet also cleaned Dukes ears. That was all the medical treatment Duke needed. Duke was a healthy elderly dog.

    The DCI agent did a sloppy, biased, one sided, incomplete investigation. By his own words, he spent 1 hour and 20 minutes on the case. He did not request Dukes Medical records to see if the cop was telling the truth. He did not request police dispatch logs to see if the cop was telling the truth. Evidence pictures that were taken of Duke, by a sheriff deputy, shortly after he was shot, were not used in the investigation. The deputy “lost” the pictures. Pictures would have proved that Duke was not mangy looking as the officer claimed.

  27. Jan Juhnke

    And keep in mind, we don’t even know for sure if Duke was off the property or taken off the property. Officer Magee claims he picked Duke up on main street. Duke came up missing is all we know.

  28. Jan Juhnke

    {Officer Magee tried unsuccessfully through the afternoon and evening to identify the owners. He observed fleas on the dog, and he knew that the private kennel to which the police usually take stray dogs would not accept an animal with fleas.}

    None of this is true. Officer Magee picked Duke up at 3:30 he claims. Then he claims he dumped him at 6:00 when he got a call about a calf loose in town. He is claiming he drove around with Duke for 2 1/2hrs asking people about Duke. Where are these people? Everyone knew we were looking for Duke for months, so where are these people? Also, if you can not tell by the officers words in his statement, what time he picked Duke back up, you really should not make a claim that the officer tried to locate the owners throughout the afternoon and evening.

  29. Oh, look, it’s Facebook pile-on night. Let’s get a few things straight:

    I have faithfully reported exactly the claims made in the documents on record. I posted the differing claims of the dog owner and the law enforcement officers. I did not make one incorrect statement in reporting what those parties said, and I posted their complete written documents so readers can read and judge for themselves.

    I am generally pretty good at comprehending what I read.

    If there are errors, they are not mine, but those of the individuals who filed statements.

    Judy, I am occasionally lazy, but I am never hung over. Your accusing me of getting drunk may be the biggest error on this page. Consider apologizing, and focus on the issue, not your misguided personal attacks.

    Feel free to send all your other Facebook friends to read and discuss this issue. But be ready to focus on the issue. Provide evidence, not insults, if you want people to take your story seriously.

  30. If the officer had some axe to grind with this dog, why did he drive around for 2 1/2 hours with it riding shotgun before taking it out to the woods? That’s just talk that’s insaner than most get out.

  31. Jan, pay attention: I’m reporting what Officer Magee said he did. You are free to dispute his claim. I’m not trying to stop you. I’m just telling you to focus on the issue.

    By the way, how many other blogs have bothered to report Officer Magee’s claim at all?

  32. Jan Juhnke

    I spoke with officer Magee via phone on the evening of Sept 22nd when he finally came forward and admitted to having picked Duke up. ( he had not made a report of picking up a dog on his daily activity sheet)

    He told me he was on his way to take Duke to the place North of town(Pet’s Inn) when he got a call about a loose calf so he turned around and took Duke to the campground and dumped him off instead. So your claim that officer Magee spotted fleas on Duke and knew he could not take him to the Private Kennel is simply just an assumption you made. Please don’t state things as facts unless you can prove as facts. If someone claims to have done something, please state it as a claim.

  33. Jan Juhnke

    Error>>>{Mike Juhnke was Duke’s owner. Juhnke found out about the shooting and asked state’s attorney Lisa Rothschadl to look into the matter. }

    Mike Juhnke did not find out about the SHOOTING and ask Lisa Rothschadl to investigate.

    Mike Juhnke did not even learn his dog was dead until a JUNE of this year.

  34. Jan Juhnke

    {Jan, pay attention: I’m reporting what Officer Magee said he did. You are free to dispute his claim. I’m not trying to stop you. I’m just telling you to focus on the issue.

    By the way, how many other blogs have bothered to report Officer Magee’s claim at all?}

    That’s what I am doing. I am disputing. I read some of the peoples comments and I want to set the record straight.

    I didn’t even know you had posted this story. I stumbled upon it this evening. If I would have known, I would have given you more reports and facts/evidence that I have received since the initial reports I gave you. I am not made at you. I am just correcting the errors I noticed and stating facts about what happened.

  35. All right, then. Let’s be clear about that. Now let’s hear Judy take back her distracting personal insults and get back on the real story.

  36. I was actually kinda mad at Mr. H for posting this story back in August, Ms. Juhnke. But I’m just about over it now.

  37. Jan Juhnke

    Grudznick>>{If the officer had some axe to grind with this dog, why did he drive around for 2 1/2 hours with it riding shotgun before taking it out to the woods? }

    Do you have some proof that officer Magee drove around for 2 1/2hrs with Duke in the car?

  38. Jan Juhnke

    {All right, then. Let’s be clear about that. Now let’s hear Judy take back her distracting personal insults and get back on the real story.}

    You will have to take that up with her.

    But yes, lets get back to the real story. I have the DCI agents statement which clearly shows he spent 1 hr and 20 minutes on the case.

    I also have the dispatch log for Sept 21st and 22nd.

    We also have video of officer Magee intimidating another witness who has come forward concerning another dog incident with officer Magee.

    I have a letter from the States attorney (Lisa) stating that the deputy Sheriff did not print off the evidence pictures of Duke and has since had problem s with his cell phone so the pictures are lost ( even though the DCI agent written statement states that photo evidence is at Sheriffs office)

    They have also “lost” emials between the Sheriff and the DCI agent. Emails that should have been in the report that was court ordered released to me.

  39. Jan Juhnke

    The Bon Homme Sheriff is refusing to turn over public records to me and others who have requested them. I even spoke with the gentlemen who was responsible for getting the SD Sunshine Act (open records) bill written and passed into law and he assures me what I am requesting released is public record.

    The Sheriff is claiming his department had nothing to do with this case yet..The Sheriff and two of his deputies are listed as witnesses in the DCI agents report.

  40. Jan Juhnke

    I was actually kinda mad at Mr. H for posting this story back in August, Ms. Juhnke. But I’m just about over it now.

    Mr Grudznick, you should not be mad that he reported on this story. Actually this is a pretty big story of corruption and cover up besides the awful deed of the officer shooting Duke.

    I just wish I would have known that the story was written and posted as there is much more I could have added in way of evidence.

    The Argus leader did cover the story focusing on the officers ethical behavior. But there is much more to cover.

  41. Jan Juhnke

    Here is my letter to and reply from Senator Sutton District 19. Duke was not flea and tick infested nor did he look mangy but the officer is using that insane excuse so I will prove that he still broke the law even with his dumb excuse.

    Hello Sir,
    > I would like you to please clarify a SDCL for me please.
    >
    > 40-1-13. Euthanasia of fatally injured or diseased animal–Notice to euthanize–Violation as misdemeanor. Any animal injured or diseased past recovery shall be euthanized within twelve hours in a manner prescribed in rule by the board, by the owner or person in possession of the animal, after having been notified by any law enforcement officer, any agent or officer of any humane society, or any agent of the board to euthanize the animal. A violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
    > Source: SDC 1939, § 40.2206; SL 1991, ch 186, § 8; SL 1991, ch 331, §§ 25, 27; SL 2014, ch 194, § 13.
    >
    > Does this law mean that if someone with authority, such as a town cop, “claims” an animal that he picks up, has fleas and ticks and “looks” mangy, that they can kill such animal within 12 hours if they don’t have a city pound to shelter the animal in?
    >
    > A simple yes or no will suffice.
    >
    > If you reply yes, then please explain to me if the same officer would be breaking these two law if he had dump the same dog at a campground earlier in the same day.
    >
    > 40-1-12. Allowing fatally injured or diseased animal to suffer needlessly prohibited–Violation as misdemeanor. No person may keep any animal which is injured or diseased, past recovery, or unfit for any useful purpose and in suffering, or intentionally abandon to die any sick or disabled animal. A violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
    > Source: SDC 1939, § 40.2206; SL 1977, ch 190, § 448; SL 1991, ch 186, § 7; SL 1991, ch 331, § 27.
    >
    > 40-1-2.3. Neglect, abandonment, or mistreatment of animal–Misdemeanor. No person owning or responsible for the care of an animal may neglect, abandon, or mistreat the animal. A violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
    > Source: SL 1991, ch 331, § 3; SL 2014, ch 194, § 3.
    >
    > I will wait for a reply before asking my next question.
    > Thank you.
    > Jan Juhnke

    Reply I received
    Jan,
    Thank you for asking me this question. The answer to your first question is No, and I will explain why. First, the statute states that the animal has to be “injured of diseased past recovery”. In this scenario a dog that looks mangy, or has fleas or ticks is not considered “injured or diseased past recovery”. Secondly, this law does not allow a town cop or law enforcement to kill the animal in question. It states that the owner or person in possession of the animal would be the one putting the animal down, not law enforcement. Law enforcement are the one’s notifying someone of the injured or diseased animal. If you would like more clarity than what I am able to provide I would be glad to put you in touch with our state veterinarian to further explain the law. Thank you again for your question and please take care!
    Sincerely,
    Billie H. Sutton

  42. Jan Juhnke

    read for yourself in officer Magee’s statement and Deputy Magg’s statement posted above.

    Officer Magees written statement> “so I went down by the marina area to look for the calf”.

    Deputy Magg’s statement > Officer Magee told me he then went to the marina area to see if the dog belonged to anyone camping down there.

  43. Jan Juhnke

    I have private messaged you more facts and pictures via facebook messages. There is also a video you are free to view and another eye witness to this same cop jumping out of his car and running and shooting at another dog. This happened in town, he missed the dog. Hard telling where the bullets landed.

  44. Bill Dithmer

    ” Judy, I am occasionally lazy, but I am never hung over. Your accusing me of getting drunk may be the biggest error on this page. Consider apologizing, and focus on the issue, not your misguided personal attacks.”

    Thats rich Cory, you let people call others racist and have no problem but when your little world gets pissed on you want an apology.

    The Blindman

  45. Bill, you are as free to demand an apology if someone calls you names as I am.

    I imagine we can find numerous instances where commenters have deemed certain views racist. However, I’ll suggest there may be a difference. Often when racism is alleged here, commenters are directly addressing statements made about the main issue under discussion—white–Indian relations, immigration, the Confederate flag, etc.

    Judy isn’t making a point related to the main issue at hand; she’s just popping off in the worst barroom style of the Internet, disagreeing, not understanding how to properly refute statements with evidence and logic, and thus fabricating a gratuitous and patently false insult.

    That said, I welcome submission of examples where “racism” has been lobbed as ignorantly and illogically as Judy has behaved with her comment above.

  46. Jan Juhnke

    I am pretty sure Judy was upset because of the way you wrote the story. Except for the last sentence, this entire paragraph comes off sounding like you had confirmed the officers statements and his actions are factual which then lead your readers to assume Duke was in fact flea and tick infested and that the officer had in fact looked for Dukes owners for hours etc.>>>>

    {Officer Magee tried unsuccessfully through the afternoon and evening to identify the owners. He observed fleas on the dog, and he knew that the private kennel to which the police usually take stray dogs would not accept an animal with fleas. That night, ten hours after picking up the dog, Officer Magee shot the dog twice and left the body in a cedar grove out in the country. In his statement, Officer Magee cites city ordinances on dangerous and diseased animals to justify his euthanizing the dog.}

  47. Judy needs to learn to control her upset and comment constructively. She could have said what you said, which is reasonable; instead, she chose to go for false insults.

  48. Jan Juhnke

    Here is officer Magee’s dispatch activity log for Sept 21st and Sept 22nd 2014. The day he supposedly drove around for hours with a flea and tick infested mangy looking dog in his car searching for the owners. The day he dumped Duke at a campground because of a loose calf call. The day he picked Duke back up(somewhere, at sometime of the night) The day he used his gun to shoot and kill Duke.

    Sept 21st, 2014
    0305 (3:05am) 10-10 (out of service, subject to call) 42 (Officer is at residence)
    1057 (10:57am) 10-8 (in service)
    1131 (11:31am) 10-10 (out of service, subject to call) 10-42 (officer is at residence)
    1415 (2:15pm) 10-78 (for your information) Yearling calf on Wood st.
    1500 (3:00pm) 10-78 (for your information) Calf in Pasture
    1800 (6:00pm) 10:78 (for your information) Cow calf by Casey’s
    1843 (6:43pm) 10-42 (officer is at residence) 10-10 (out of service, subject to call ) Supper
    1953 (7:53pm) 10-8 (in servcie)
    Sept 22nd, 2014
    0041 (12:41am) 10-10 (out of service, subject to call) 42 (Officer is at residence)
    0749 (7:49am) 10-8 (in service)
    0805 (8:05am) 10-98 ( assignment completed) 42 (Officer is at residence)
    1535 (3:35pm) 10-8 (in service)
    1800 (6:00pm) 10-10 (out of service subject to call) 10-42 (officer at residence)
    1910 (7:10pm) 10-8 (in service)
    1913 (7:13pm) 10-10 (out of service subject to call) Mike Juhnke residence on cell phone
    1935 (7:35pm) Responding to 911
    1950 (7:50pm) Dishwasher in ditch
    2105 (9:05pm) 10-28 (check full registration) 12CC82
    2152 (9:52pm) 10-10 (out of service, subject to call) Jelsma’s shed on cell

  49. Jan Juhnke

    Dispatch log shows Magee’s activity with a calf, even activity with a dishwasher yet no activity with a dog.

    Also…Officer Magee reported his daily activity to Springfield city finance/Mayors office. Once again, he reported activity with a calf yet omitted to mention any activity with a dog in his verbal report to them.

    Officer Dejong stated that their was no report of officer Magee picking up a dog when Mike Juhnke called the police Dept at 7:49 am the next morning still looking for Duke.