Officers investigating dog shooting; no decision yet

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— Routt County Sheriff’s Office animal control officer Cindy DelValle said Friday that she still is collecting statements from people in the reported dog shooting in Yampa.

DelValle said she has two statements completed and expects to get five more Mon­day. She said she wants all the statements before she makes any decisions or issues any reports in the case.

The dog’s owner, Oak Creek resident Joshua Flaharty, re­­ported that his 3-year-old Eng­lish boxer, Mr. Bubbles, was shot in a field outside of Yampa on May 29.

On Friday, a woman who answered the phone at the home of the man who reportedly shot the dog said the suspect would not make any statements until the investigation is concluded. The man has not been charged with any crime, so the Steamboat Pilot & Today is not releasing his name.

DelValle said the law allows ranchers to shoot a dog if they think they, their livestock, domestic animals, children or property are in harm’s way. Flaharty, 22, has said there were no livestock near where Mr. Bubbles was shot.

Comments

MrTaiChi 3 years, 10 months ago

What?

I'm taking no sides until all the facts are in, but this guy(?) is involved in a newsworthy event, precipitates it in fact, newsworthy enough for STEAMBOAT TODAY to decide to publish the guest editorial/letter it in the first place, and now you will not report his name?

As someone with mostly conservative social attitudes, I subscribe to the one that says someone has to be responsible for his decisions. Here, the killing of a family pet has created interest in the laws of the state and county related to justification for that act and has exposed a wellspring of emotions pro and con related to such events. Why doesn't the public have a right to know those invoved in the event, as long as they are adults?

Does the STEAMBOAT TODAY have a standard policy for uncharged controversial events, or was this a one time judgment call?

Yeah I'm posting anonymously, but my avatar didn't shoot a pet. If I did, I would have no expectation of privacy sheltering me from public reaction, pro and con.

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francinefrank66 3 years, 10 months ago

what day was the guest editorial, I didn't see it?

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JLM 3 years, 10 months ago

The simple fact of the shooting is news worthy in its own right. There is absolutely no reason to not reveal the name of the participants.

While the shooter is, in fact, subject to criminal jeopardy that is an additional news worthy development but does not trump the simple fact of naming the participants.

This is political correctness taken to an absurd level.

This is not a whole lot different than reporting the Police Blotter.

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MrTaiChi 3 years, 10 months ago

Went back to look- It wasn't an editorial/letter, but a straight up news story, making it even more incomprehensible why the logical follow-up article conceals an important fact like the identity of the parties.

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 10 months ago

This paper's policy is unusually protective of the accused. Virtually everyone else will print the names of people prior to being charged. I could see some justification of a paper not printing the name when only one side's facts are being presented and there are serious questions regarding the accuracy of the facts. In this case, there is no dispute of who shot the dog. The only question is whether there will be charges.

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Terry Noble 3 years, 10 months ago

It would seem to me that the public has a right to know what properties the landowner is shooting peoples pets on. I personally would like to make sure he never sees my pet. I do understand the newspapers stand of allowing trial by jury rather than by press. It's a tough line for the paper to walk relating to what it prints and a persons right to a fair trial. So many in this area are quick to jump the press but I commend them on a difficult job well done. Laws must be abided by all parties.

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