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St. Charles Co. Sheriff's Deputy accused of killing neighbor's dog with pellet gun

“It’s almost like somebody was trying to shoot a deer,” said Eric Bacon.

ST CHARLES, Mo. — The St. Charles County Police Department has finished an investigation into an incident involving an off-duty St. Charles County sheriff's deputy shooting a neighbor’s dog. A special prosecutor could take on the case.

The family says they have a hole in their hearts after Apollo, a 3-year-old rescue from Spain, was shot in the middle of a subdivision.

Like many 10-year-olds, Gio Hansen and his dog Apollo were often inseparable.

“He would always come up on my bed,” said Gio Hansen. “We would go out and play baseball in the backyard. You know, we just had fun.”

However, his parents noticed something was off with Apollo after they finished some yardwork Sunday afternoon.

“The moment he turned around he started coughing and foaming at the mouth and collapsing,” said Erica Hansen. “We thought 'Oh my God, it’s a snake. He must have a snake bite.'”

Erica Hansen tried everything she could to resuscitate the dog as her husband, Eric Bacon, rushed them to the vet.

“The doctor in the ER came in and said we couldn’t resuscitate him,” said Erica Hansen.

X-rays revealed that Apollo wasn’t bitten by a snake, but he had been shot in the lungs with a pellet gun.

“It’s almost like somebody was trying to shoot a deer,” said Bacon.

As soon as they got home he started trying to piece together what happened.

“Do you own a pellet gun?” Bacon can be heard asking a neighbor on video.

“Yes I do,” said the neighbor.

“Did you shoot my dog?” asked Bacon.

Video of the exchange shows the neighbor, who we’ve chosen not to identify since he hasn’t been charged with a crime, identify himself as a St. Charles County sheriff’s deputy.

“What was your dog doing in my yard?” asked the man.

“All he ever wanted to do was make friends with everybody he met,” said Bacon.

“What do you got a pit bull?” the neighbor asked.

“He’s not a pit bull,” said Bacon.

Credit: KSDK

The family said they’ve been in contact with St. Charles police, animal control and even the sheriff.

Bacon said he had eyes on Apollo throughout the afternoon and never saw him go near the deputy’s yard.

“I have extreme concerns about this man being in a position of public trust,” said Bacon.

“I want to hear an explanation of why he shot my dog, and I want him to apologize,” said Gio.

5 On Your Side tried to reach out to the deputy in question to get his side of the story, but he has yet to respond to requests for comment.

The St. Charles County Sheriff's Department has had a deputy stationed outside of his house throughout the day.

On Friday, the St. Charles County Prosecuting Attorney's Office said it received the police department's investigation into the case for review. However, the prosecutor's office is requesting a special prosecutor be appointed to review the case "due to a familial relationship" between the suspect and a member of the office.

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