Owner of dog shot by deputy turns self in on pair of counts
The owner of a dog that charged a Douglas County Sheriff’s deputy forcing the officer to open fire was arrested Thursday.
Jim Handlin, 21, turned himself in on a warrant charging him with performance of an act in willful disregard of safety of persons, a gross misdemeanor, and failing to register as an ex-felon.
On March 10, a deputy who was attempting to the find the owner of a vehicle blocking traffic on Logging Road was charged by Handlin’s rottweiler-mix “Mickey,” and a pit bull in Handlin’s driveway. Investigators said the officer “backpedaled” down the icy driveway, but as the dogs drew closer and appeared they weren’t going to stop, the officer drew his handgun and fired. The bullet went through Mickey’s left shoulder. The dog was treated and released the same day.
Handlin’s roommate, Gabriel Rowland, 24, the owner of the pitbull, was arrested on March 25 in connection with the incident. He was also charged with the gross misdemeanor, performance of an act in willful disregard of safety of persons. Douglas County has no leash law, but there is an ordinance that requires that people keep their dogs under control, and it is against the law to allow dogs to run at large.
After the attack Handlin, who said he moved to Douglas County without employment for the purpose of “snowboarding,” vehemently denied the possibility that Mickey might have acted aggressively toward the officer. He said he let the dogs out every morning without supervision, and had never had a problem.
“My dog has never bitten anyone in his life,” he said.
Handlin was convicted in El Dorado County in July 1997 for residential burglary. Douglas County investigators said Handlin was also convicted of a felony in San Francisco County. In Nevada all felons must register with the local law enforcement agency when they move into the state.
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