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Neighbor shoots and kills beloved nursing home therapy dog, sheriff’s response infuriates hundreds

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Topeka, KS — A big black dog named Marley was well known at a Topeka nursing home, but Marley was shot and killed Friday reportedly by her owner’s neighbor and friends want the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office to take action.

“Marley will come up and she gives hugs, its her favorite thing to do,” said Jackie.

Jackie Hollis’ dog, Marley, is very popular around Legacy nursing home.

“She comes here everyday and wants to play with the residents. She will let them grab her face and kiss on her,” says Hollis.

Hollis says the 10-month-old Presa Carnaio is training to be a therapy dog and helps residents like drummer, Sam Schlup.

“She helped me through a really rough time just being there for me,” says Schlup.

Friday night, Hollis says Marley ran out to her neighbor’s chicken coop while she was away from home. She says the neighbor called animal control but then…

“And he claims that Marley charged him,” says Hollis.

That’s when she says the neighbor shot and killed the 90 pound dog. Hollis said she talked to a Shawnee County Sheriff’s Deputy.

“And he said that she hit the ground and he went and put 2 more bullets in her head. I buried her that night and I made sure he could see me do it,” says Hollis.

Hollis buried Marley in the front yard of her Tecumseh home. She says the neighbor who shot Marley is David Spies. 13 News knocked on his door and called several times–Spies has not responded.

Now, Schlup, Hollis and other Legacy nursing home residents are without a best friend. Sam wears a red bandanna in Marley’s memory.

“I wear one just like it. She had it on when she was shot 3 times,” said Schlup.

“Sam was here dying and Marley has been his friend, the whole time, she comes everyday, and he has nobody. Marley was the only thing he had and he said it was the one thing that made it feel like home here, is that we let animals come here and yeah I don’t know. I just hate that he took that from me. You don’t meet that many dogs that make an impact on a lot of peoples lives like she did,” cries Hollis.

13 News received a press release late Monday afternoon from Shawnee County Sheriffs Office that says Animal Control learned that Marley killed livestock and charged the livestock owner when he attempted to stop the attack.

Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office Captain Shane Hoobler says the case is still under investigation. However, he did tell 13 News it is not illegal to kill a dog if it is on your property–according to a Kansas statue if the dog is injuring or attempting to injure livestock.

Hollis’ friend has started an online petition called Justice for Marley and so far it has received more than 1,200 signatures.

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17 comments

  • 03sv1g

    Sorry, but it doesn’t sound like the homeowner did anything wrong. It sucks to have to kill the dog but if it was attacking animals on his property, he had every right to shoot it. I would have done the same.

  • gary robinson

    put it this way–if that was my dog and this ass shot it well, I will not say what I would do but u can guess it…a combat veteran

    • 03sv1g

      Yeah, nevermind that the dog was on someone else’s property, potentially killing another person’s animals. They owe it to you to let your dog kill their animals, right? Because you’re more important than everyone and everything else, right? Keep your damned animal at home and this won’t happen! If my dog got out and was on someone else’s property attacking their animals or another person, I wouldn’t blame them for shooting it.

      • Kodie

        See, theres the problem. potentially . Potentially, the dog could have been harmless. When you decide potential is the same as doing, and treat it as such, you risk the chance of potentially needlessly taking a life needlessly. But since it was just a dog, no worries.

        Life is sacred. Even food. Needlessly killing is just a waste.

        • 03sv1g

          I said potentially, because I wasn’t there to see what happened. If a dog is in a chicken coop, chasing chickens, it would be fair to assume it was trying to kill and eat them, it’s what animals do. BTW nowhere did I say “it’s just a dog.” You assumed I dont care about animals and nothing could be further from the truth.

  • Loren

    I have chickens and I sure would have done something to protect them. Very sad for the dog, its owner and everyone at the nursing home, but I can’t say I would have done differently. Maybe try to chase it away with a shovel or baseball bat? Scary thought when you don’t know if an animal has rabies or whatever else.

    • 03sv1g

      I agree, it’s terrible to have to kill the animal but I don’t understand the folks who take zero responsibility for their animals. It’s always someone else’s fault. I keep my dog fenced in but he has escaped on occasion and does not get along with other dogs. . If somebody shoots him to protect their own animals, I have no one to blame but myself.

      • Trish

        Why do owners not keep their dogs on their own property? The owner of the dog should take full responsibility for his own negligence. Kansas needs some kind of leash law even in rural areas.

    • Debbie Bell

      Scare it away so it will come back and kill later?

      If bully people actually cared about dog welfare they would educate the public thst bully dogs can never be permitted to reach a victim, can never be unsupervised or loose.

      Tragically the current bully people are no different than those who fight dogs. They do not care about dogs. Proof is their insistence on the continued breeding of dog killing dogs.

      They only care about self, ego , and their ability to own, breed and monger the dog of their choice.

      Proof is their sociopathic defense of bully dogs: “bully dogs were not created to kill humans, they were created to kill your dogs.”

      That’s insane.

  • Beestocker

    If the dog killed this assholes chickens then where are the dead chickens there should be proof that the dog killed them if not then the guy just shot the dog because he wanted to and he is a douche bag that should be be locked away for stupidity.

    • 03sv1g

      Maybe there are no dead chickens. Maybe he killed the dog to prevent it from killing the chickens. Do you really think it’s ok for the dog to be on someone else’s property going after their animals? WTF is wrong with you people? Have you ever taken responsibility for anything in your life?

  • Kim

    Unfortunately I believe that the only one to blame here is the owner for not providing a secure enclosure for Marley.The neighbor could have used a bb or pellet gun to send the dog a warning,I don’t think she deserved to die.

  • Debbie Bell

    What’s the point of owning a bully dog if it can’t wander the neighborhood, terrorize and kill the neighbor’s animals?

    Feel badly that the dog is dead? Here’s what you do to feel better.

    Pretend it was a non bully puppy who was disemboweled in her own fenced yard by a loose pit bull who chewed through the fence in a good bully dog seek and destroy mission.

    Those horrific dog deaths don’t matter to bully people! That dog abuse never get any petitions.

    See, that makes it all better. Dogs die. Don’t change a thing.

  • Cheryl

    Kim I agree with your comment. Sometimes you can avoid killing if possible. I would have tried that first. The owner needed a better way to keep her home and he is at fault. Sad story.

  • Paul Bobnak (@PaulBobnak)

    God-&%$#ed savages – those of you with your “just a dog” comments. You just love death & killing. One thing I will say: people need to be responsible for their pets, watch them always, and to take care. But that is NEVER an excuse for killing. There are other solutions that do not involve violence. But as i said, a lot of you love death – just like ISIS. You don’t care about violence and controlling yourselves. You are just to arrogant & stupid to admit it.