Ohio Man Gets No Fine Or Jail Time For Shooting Police Dog, Feud Continues

Steven Vanderhoff receives suspended sentence for shooting police dogAn Ohio man who shot a police dog that wandered onto his property received a suspended sentence and no fines after the judge urged the man to “make peace” with his police officer neighbor. The incident began in November when Flip, a 5-year-old Belgian Malinois police dog that was living with Officer Bryon Deeter approached his car and “would not leave.”

Steven Vanderhoff, who was returning from the grocery store with his 18-month-old son said that he did not recognize the dog. When the dog finally moved away, he ran into the house to grab his shot gun and killed the dog.

The town of Finley has been divided by the issue, and the judge imposed the suspended 90-day sentence in hopes that it will bring peace and closure to the neighborhood.

The officer was not cited for letting a dog roam off leash.

From the Toledo Blade:

After finding Mr. Vanderhoff guilty, Judge Routson gave him a 90-day jail sentence, which the judge suspended on the condition that he remain law-abiding for two years. Judge Routson ordered him to pay court costs but declined to levy a fine, he said, because Mr. Vanderhoff had made a $250 contribution to the Humane Society of Hancock County.

But it seems that the feud between Officer Deeter and Vanderhoff is not yet over.

Mr. Vanderhoff declined to comment afterward, but his girlfriend and her parents, who live on the same Jackson Township road where Officer Deeter lives, said they did not believe the issue would be resolved.

Nicole McCahan said just a few weeks ago she was pushing the couple’s now-2-year-old son in his stroller when Spike - the new Findlay police dog who lives with the Deeters - began charging toward her. She said Officer Deeter’s wife was yelling at the dog, which finally stopped before reaching the road.

“I just stopped and faced it,” she said. “All this stuff was going through my mind. Lord knows what it would’ve done.”

Also, the loss of the police dog would not count against Vanderhoff thanks to the town’s celebrity connection:

The city did not seek restitution for Flip - an estimated $15,000 loss, including training and equipment - in part because Ben Roethlisberger, Findlay native and Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, paid for Flip’s replacement through his charitable foundation.

5 Responses to “Ohio Man Gets No Fine Or Jail Time For Shooting Police Dog, Feud Continues”

  1. wescott20 says:

    It’s important to always keep pets on a leash or contained, otherwise bastards like Vanderhoff will always be trying to find an excuse to shoot a neighbor’s pet. Believe me, the guy was not in fear of any danger for himself or his stinking baby…he was itching to kill that dog out of vindictiveness. I hope the police force in that town makes Vanderhoff’s life a misery from now on.

  2. bigimplants says:

    Remind me to run into my house and grab my gun when the neighborhood kids, who I don’t always recognize, are on my lawn……if the dog moved on, why did this guy feel compelled to kill it?
    PS Doesn’t anyone get married anymore before they reproduce? Forget that, most people shouldn’t reproduce……..
    PPS Am I the only person who doesn’t own a gun?

  3. Donna says:

    My question “why was a police dog” allowed to be loose ? What level of training did this dog have and where was the handler ? I do Not agree with killing anything needlessly.But,………….what was the situation ? The officer should be cited. You do not leave your service revolver on your porch. Many details appear not to have been listed. Both men are in the wrong.Over response from the shooter and poor management skills on the officers part. The loser.is the dog.

  4. HighNote says:

    I agree with Donna. Both men are in the wrong. Police dogs can be very dangerous and should never be let out to roam a neighborhood. I do not blame the man for being scared of the dog. I do blame him for shooting him.. He Could have just called the police or animal care. I also thought that people were not allowed to shoot a gun off in the city limits of any town.
    I do not trust strange dogs coming on my property either. They don’t know me and I don’t know them. I don’t want them on my property either. I have my own animals and I keep them in a fenced yard or on a leash. I would not want my animals to scare anyone else or bother them. I also do not like someone elses pet coming into my yard and doing their thing so I have to pick it up or accidently step in it when mowing my lawn. I don’t want some big dog coming on my property and attacking my dog! I love my pets and I do not dislike other peoples but they should be responsible for them and I should not have to put up with theirs and they should not have to put up with mine!
    I feel no one has the right to kill your pet unless the pet was of course attacking you or a member of your family. I would choose to protect my family first.

  5. Melanie says:

    I agree with Mr. Vanderhoff completely. My father worked for Findlay Police Department for years. I am very familiar with the Vanderhoff family as well as the officers and their K-9’s. I would not recognize the police dog without his owner present. The dog was on Mr. Vanderhoff’s property and Mr. Vanderhoff did what any parent would do. If Mr. Deeter would have kept his dog on a leash like ALL the rest of us have to, then he wouldn’t have lost his dog. I am sorry for Mr. Deeter’s loss, however I am even sorrier that Mr. Deeter works for the police department to enforce laws that he can’t seem to follow himself. I wish both of these families could make peace…which should start with Mr. Deeter taking responsibility for his ignorance in caring for this wonderful dog and stop blaming everyone else for his stupidity.

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