Officials with the provincial Conservation Officer Service are looking into the actions of one of their own after a dog was shot and killed during a fishing investigation.
Inspector Chris Doyle with the service said the incident happened on Sunday (Feb. 3) at approximately 2:30 p.m. on Blackwater Lake, which is 40 km north of Pemberton.
“A Conservation Officer was investigating a fishing violation on Blackwater Lake on Sunday afternoon and as he approached two suspects a dog charged at him in a threatening manner,” Doyle said, adding when the dog got close to the officer and would not stop being aggressive the officer “discharged his firearm and the dog was killed.”
“In addition to our investigation on illegal fishing activities, we are reviewing the actions of the officer to ensure the use of force was consistent with our policy and training.”
The incident involved two men from the Lower Mainland who were ice fishing at the time; one was the owner of the dog, which was a large Bavarian shepherd. The officer was approaching the fishermen on the frozen lake surface when the dog approached him. Doyle said the situation occurred quickly and the officer would have been with in 10s of metres away from the dog’s owner when it was shot. He added the officer asked the owner to control his dog before shooting the animal.
As of yet no violation tickets have been issued to either fisherman as Doyle said the matter is still under investigation, which is expected to take a month. RCMP officers attended to assist the investigation and took statements from witnesses.
Doyle could not say how many times the CO shot the dog with his sidearm, but acknowledged the incident is a “very unusual situation.”
“Our officers encounter persons and violators in the field with dogs hundreds of times, so certainly our officers are used to dealing with people with dogs in the field,” he said.