A Brooklet man was arrested Sunday after shooting two puppies he said were in his trash.
Justin Bryan Davis, 29, Old Happy Road, Brooklet, was firing shots around 5:30 p.m. Sunday during a time when a children's birthday party was being held in the area, said Bulloch County Sheriff's Deputy Derrick D. Dunning.
Dunning was in the area for another matter when he heard shots fired, and saw Davis walking with a rifle and something black in his hands. When Dunning went to his patrol car with intent to drive over to question Davis, he heard another shot, he stated in reports.
As Dunning pulled into the driveway, he heard yet another shot, saw where Davis had shot a black puppy. He called out to Davis, who "threw his gun down and proceeded to pick up another small, brown puppy he had shot and threw it next to the other," he said.
Dunning questioned Davis, whom he said smelled of alcohol. Davis said he had only two beers, but he registered .106 on an Alco Sensor test, he said.
Davis told Dunning he "had permission to shoot the puppies and they were in his trash."
Bulloch County Humane Enforcement Supervisor Joey Sanders said the on-call humane officer that day was not called out for the case, and that often deputies will handle such cases themselves when they don't feel calling humane enforcement is necessary.
He also said that shooting animals, especially in a residential area, is not wise.
Dunning said Davis fired several shots in the direction of where the children were enjoying the party.
Sanders said shooting an animal may be warranted if the animal is threatening a person or another animal, but when dogs or other animals are simply annoying and doing things like getting into trash, the correct response is to call humane enforcement.
Officers have busy schedules and may not be able to immediately handle a call, unless it is an emergency, but they will respond and trap or collect problem animals if they are strays.
If the animals belong to someone, the owner will be contacted and advised of the laws and the problem, he said.
"People have the right to protect their property and themselves, but firing a gun in a residential area can cause someone to be arrested for reckless conduct," he said.
Unless the animal is aggressive, "Call Humane Enforcement," he said.
The number to call for problem animals is (912) 489-6911.
In reports, Dunning did not state the puppies were aggressive, and said Davis' only reason for shooting the pups were because they were in his trash. Reports did not state whether Davis gave information on who granted him permission to shoot the puppies.
Dunning photographed the pups, confiscated Davis' shotgun and charged him with discharging a firearm on a public highway, cruelty to animals, and discharging a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
After warrants were secured, Davis was arrested and taken to the Bulloch County Jail, where he later posted bond.
Holli Deal Bragg may be reached at (912) 489-9414.