DeKalb County Police Defend Killing of Innocent Man and his Dog

DeKalb County Police Deputy Chief Operating Officer of Public Safety Cedric Alexander and DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann have responded to very basic questions surrounding the December 29th, 2014 shooting of Kevin Davis and his dog Tooter by police officer JR Pitts.

Davis had called authorities on the night of his shooting seeking help after a roommate had stabbed his girlfriend. Instead, officer JR Pitts immediately shot the family dog Tooter; Pitts then shot and fatally wounded Davis. Both Kevin Davis' girlfriend and neighbors have confirmed in statements to the press that JR Pitts did not identify himself as a police officer until after Davis had been shot. The Puppycide Database Project has previously written about the Kevin Davis shooting and the differences between the statements of Davis' girlfriend and neighbors and the statement provided by the killer JR Pitts.

In his statement to the press, Deputy Chief Cedric Alexander attempted to deny reports by the Davis family that they had been prevented from visiting Kevin Davis as he lay dying from his wounds at Grady Memorial Hospital over the course of nearly 48 hours and that Davis had been handcuffed to his hospital bed.

However, DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann, whose office was responsible for the "detention" of Kevin Davis while at Grady Memorial Hospital, contradicted Deputy Chief Alexander in an interiew via email, stating that handcuffs and denying family visits while in hospital is common practice:

“It is for the safety of the public and inmates in our custody that we routinely restrain arrestees, generally with handcuffs. This practice applies to inmates who are taken to medical facilities prior to coming to the DeKalb County Jail. It is also our practice not to allow inmate visitation except in the most grave situations, and then with the confirmation of that condition by the medical professionals at the facility. Tragically, Mr. Davis succumbed to his wounds while being treated at Grady Hospital. In the interest of transparency, however, we will review the circumstances regarding his condition and any visitation requests.”

Following up his untruthful accounting of Davis' last hours, Deputy Chief Cedric Alexander went on to justify the issuing of an Assault charge on the dying Davis during his brief stay in the hospital. In contradiction of the statements provided by multiple independent witnesses, the charge was

"Based on the information that Mr. Davis refused to drop his weapon after being verbally commanded to do so."

Here is the version of events from the perspective the killer, JR Pitts, as told to the press by

“He [JR Pitts] banged on the door of the apartment. He announced himself. There was no response, but yet there was continual yelling and screaming. [JR Pitts], feeling someone inside that apartment was in danger, very slowly opened the front door of that apartment that was found to be unlocked. As he pushed that door open. A large pit bull animal charged at [JR Pitts.]”

At this point, Pitts opens fire on the dog Tooter, killing him.

“[JR Pitts] had not physically gone inside that apartment. As he walked back … by that point he was approached by Mr. Davis and Ms. Edwards. Upon being approached by Mr. Davis, it was during that time that Ms. Edwards, according to our investigation, was yelling and screaming at [JR Pitts]. [JR Pitts] observed a firearm in the hand of Mr. Davis. [JR Pitts] stated, ‘Drop your weapon. Drop your weapon.’ Mr. Davis did not adhere to his command.”

It is at this point that Alexander claims that Pitts shot Davis "several" times.

The Davis family was quick to respond to Alexander's attempts at blaming the victim Kevin Davis for his own murder:

“[Deputy Chief Alexander's statement was] very disparate from that of those close to the family, including witnesses who have spoken with the (the Davis-Bozeman Law Firm) and organizers. It is the stance of the family and supporters that the police narrative is misleading, and that the term ‘justified shooting’ is unacceptable, untrue, and insulting in a time of grieving."

Alexander's description of events is in direct contradiction to witness statements provided to the press; all of whom have consistently said that JR Pitts did not announce himself as a police officer until after shooting Davis.