Kane County man found justified in shooting of neighbor's dog, prosecutors say

KANE COUNTY, Ill. (WLS) -- While a Kane County prosecutors found a man was justified in shooting his neighbor's dog, other members of the community said there is no justice in the decision.

Officials said Hal Phipps "feared for his safety and his life and was legally justified in the shooting of Ludwig."

It was a disappointing decision for many.

"I just can't believe there's no justice for him, there's nothing that's going to bring him back," said Amy Daszkiewicz, neighbor.

Ludwig's owner was too upset to comment.

"It's a bad day, it's a sad day for me," said Joe Petit when ABC7 Eyewitness News knocked on his door. "Thank you for stopping by, I'm sorry."

The Kane County State's Attorney's Office said surveillance video shows Petit's dogs going roughly 20 feet onto Phipps' property right next door for about 45 seconds.

"He was working in his yard, startled by the growling he looked up," said Sheriff Ron Hain. "The dogs were aggressively approaching, baring their teeth at him."

That's when investigators say Phipps shot one of the dogs. You can see the aftermath in other surveillance video; the other dog goes running back to his house and Petit runs out to Ludwig.

That video and information from a witness across the river helped decide the case.

In June Petit was cited for his dogs when they allegedly attacked and bit Phipps. Another neighbor then told police that Phipps promised to shoot the dogs if they ever came on his property. Investigators said that didn't incriminate him; it just shows his fear for the dogs.

Signs in the neighborhood show just how invested people in the community have been throughout this process for Ludwig, pouring their support out on social media and even raising more than $10,000 for the dog's owner.

"He shouldn't have to go through this, this man is the most wonderful man and his dogs, it's an injustice," said Janet Williams, resident.

"I have two dogs of my own and I'm scared to walk them, I know my neighbors are scared," Daszkiewicz said.

Neighbors are even said they're reconsidering living on the block.

A woman was in the water with the dogs at the time of the shooting, but the state's attorney said no charges are being filed for reckless discharge because she was far enough away.
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