MALVERN, AR - A family is grieving over the loss of a dog after they say an officer shot and killed the animal for no reason.
The City of Malvern says an "Officer with the Malvern Police Department shot a dog that was in the process of attacking him."
The family finds themselves in a tough spot going against the word of an officer but they insist it wasn't justified.
"He's nothing but a family dog," said Austin Isom.
Isom questions why the officer shot and killed his pet. Isom has had "Skeeter", a four-year-old pit bull mix around his family for three years and says he's never had a problem.
"I get the feeling that the only reason my dog was ever shot is because of the way he looks," Austin conjectured. "That's all it was."
He says the officer came to their apartment Thursday (5/15) for a welfare check of the children.
Isom's sister-in-law, Nellie Collins, says when she opened the door to the apartment, Skeeter ran outside. But before she could get her hands on the dog, the officer grabbed for his gun.
"As soon as I see [the officer] pull out his gun I stepped back," she said. "He shot 'Keet right in the head."
"After I heard the gunshot I knew it was my dog," Austin added, explaining he was inside when the shot was fired. "I don't know which one is worse, the fact they shot my dog or the fact that they shot him in front of my family."
They say with an apartment full of children and family around, cries and screams echoed with the shot.
"He told my little sister you better shut up before I shoot it again," Nellie claimed. "This man acted like he did not have no mercy. He did not care."
The family says the officer then finished his welfare check, going inside the apartment to make sure they had running water and electricity.
Before he left, Nellie says she was written a citation for failure to restrain a vicious animal, which she says Skeeter wasn't.
She remarked, "It was unnecessary for him to die like that."
As of late Monday afternoon, the Malvern Police Department had not released any official information regarding the incident.
According to Malvern Ordinance No. 08-11 Section 1 (J), "Any animals or animals that have exhibited a disposition to bit humans or other animals or which has attempted to bite any person or attack another animal within six (6) months immediately past. The animal control officer or city police officer shall have the authority to make a determination concerning the vicious disposition of an animal."
Copyright 2014 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.