Judge rules woman’s unlicensed dogs were ‘contraband’ and too bad they were shot

Spread the love
Get email updates when we post

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit against the City of Detroit on Wednesday after ruling that dog not properly licensed  are considered “contraband” and are not protected by the Fourth Amendment. According to MetroTimes, all dog owners need to heed the latest decision; stating if your dog is not licensed, a police officer can come to your home and shoot your pet through the head or the heart – and you will have no recourse.

U.S. District Court Judge George Caram Steeh wrote in his ruling Wednesday.  that dogs have no rights, and if they are not licensed, Fido and Fluffy are property even though many pat parents consider dogs as part of their families.

“The requirements of the Michigan Dog Law and the Detroit City Code, including that all dogs be current with their rabies vaccines, exist to safeguard the public from dangerous animals,” Steeh wrote. “When a person owns a dog that is unlicensed, in the eyes of the law it is no different than owning any other type of illegal property or contraband. Without any legitimate possessory interest in the dogs, there can be no violation of the Fourth Amendment.”

The Fourth Amendment (Amendment IV) to the United States Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and requires any search warrant to be judicially sanctioned and supported by probable cause. Nikita Smith never imagined her three dogs would be shot dead by police after authorities executed a search warrant and fatally shot each of her family’s beloved pets in January 2016 – including a pregnant dog that died in a pool of blood in the “corner of her basement.” According to Smith’s attorney, the officers searched multiple locations in the home, and wherever there had been one of the family’s dogs, shot and killed them “like a death squad.”

When officers knocked at the family’s door, Smith told authorities she first needed to put her dogs in the basement, however police entered without permission and shot her dogs several times through the closed bathroom door. They then went into the basement and shot the pregnant dog; Smith claimed that pet had not barked nor made any aggressive moves toward the men.

At the time, police had a different version of the disturbing events resulting in the death of the family’s two pit bulls, Debo and Mamma, and a Rottweiler named Smoke -stating the dogs had been aggressive, and they were following department procedures to shoot any animals perceived as threats. That evening Smith was arrested after police found marijuana at her house, but in court Smith pleaded not guilty; the officer never appeared at the proceeding and the case against her was dismissed according to the Detroit News.

And as distressing as the decision made by Steeh, the news gets worse. Reason reports even if the dogs had been licensed, the Smith’s suit would have still been dismissed since the police stated the dogs presented an “imminent danger to the officers.” Graphic photos showed the dogs were behind the bathroom door  and were shot and killed in barrage of bullets; how does that explain danger to the officers?

“Reason has also been tracking lawsuits against the Detroit Police Department related to dog shootings. According to the latest documents obtained by Reason, one officer has so far killed 73 dogs during his career. Two other officers involved in the Smith case testified that they had shot “at least 19″ dogs over the course of their careers.”

Bottom line – instead of training officers how to read a dog’s body language, avoid canine aggressive behavior and preserve life for all humans and animals, it’s Steeh’s opinion to allow police to shoot family pets and not give a hoot. Shame on you judge!

(Photos of dogs as “contraband” via Nikita Smith’s family dogs)

Weigh in and tell us what you think about this decision.

Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.

46 replies
  1. Mary Ann Clark says:

    We need 2 petitions! The first one to fire and prosecute the officers that murdered these poor dogs! The second petition to make sure that Judge Steeh never practices law again! There also needs to be a lawsuit to make sure that it becomes more expensive for the government to do the wrong thing and make sure all officers are retrained in the proper treatment of all animals!

  2. Mark says:

    Asshole judge. The police have and will continue to kill family pets regardless if they’re “illegal property” or not. Doesn’t Michigan have body cams? One cop killed 73 dog?!!!! That has to tell the dept they have a problem with this ASSHOLE!

  3. Tim Brady says:

    hope someone puts a bullet in the cops that shot these pups and also put one in judges head, hope it is done in front of their scumbag families so they know exactly how this woman felt when the piece of shit cops killed her pets

  4. Barkley's Mom says:

    This is disgusting! Those poor people losing their dogs to these killer cops! The judge is no better either! From the sounds of it, the Detroit Police Department are nothing more than dog killers plain and simple! Then when a POS judge won’t uphold a law suit for this senseless killing where are people to go to get justice?

  5. Barbara hartman says:

    No excuse for these murderers…this is first time I ever heard that all dogs must be licensed, etc (mine are and also go to vet)..It sounds like this lady’s dogs are inside dogs…therefore no excuse

  6. Pamela Garlisch says:

    The people really need to pay attention and vote this judge out the next time he comes up for re-election! Speak up people!

  7. Helen says:

    Cops have no business killing family pets and it should not be condoned by the justice system. Its obvious these cops and the judge are morally bankrupted. Killing these dogs in cold blood is a crime and should not go unpunished.

  8. Justice4All says:

    And in order to license your dogs, you must poison them with rabies shots, even though there is NO PROOF that rabies shots prevent rabies. NONE. But plenty of proof that they have caused health problems, brain damage, and death.

    Most people are not aware of a deeper layer to this picture, which is the marriage of government with the biggest power in the world, the pharmaceutical industry, which has also become very much intertwined with many other huge corporations that now are running world governments. This is why they are now, in addition to disseminating their false propaganda, passing laws at breakneck speed around the world to FORCE vaccinations of all kinds on EVERYONE and EVERYTHING, and refusing them makes you an enemy of the government who must be dealt with accordingly. It’s coming fast, and much of it has already come about.

    God help us all.

    Rabies Miasm in Dogs – Dogs Naturally Magazine

    Big Scam: Rabies Vaccinations | America’s Blue Lacy Dog Blog

    Vaccine-induced rabies in four cats. – National Center for …

    Tumor Related to Vaccinations in Cats | petMD

    Rabies Vaccine Injection-Site Tumors in Dogs | Blog4Dogs

    • Mark says:

      Lol! Two sites are blogs. Anyone can have a blog. The other site is from a 1982 article regarding vaccines induced in 4 cats. The other is a site that uses an article for advertising purposes. Another article with Dr. Amy admits there is no proof rabies vaccines causes cancer. However, many of people’s lives wouldn’t have been saved without rabies vaccines and many pet’s lives who have been bitten from wildlife animals would have died without the vaccine. Survival rates have increased since the mandatory rabies shots. I live near the woods and you can bet your ass I’m having my dogs and indoor cats vaccinated.

      • Justice4All says:

        No doubt you are counting on the naivety of other readers. Your efforts of twisting must look heroic to the pharma masters – Ignoring that the blogs are sharing info. from veterinarians, describing the NIH study as “a 1982 article regarding vaccines induced in 4 cats.” No, Mark, vaccines were not induced. The vaccines were INJECTED and THEN induced (CAUSED) rabies, in a medical study which is showing online. I know that pharma is doing it’s best to eliminate all studies showing how ineffective and harmful their poison shots are.

        You provided NO PROOF for your claim that many peoples and animals lives have been saved by rabies vaccines. The fact is, domestic animals have benefitted from the same changes in environment that we have, and has nothing to do with vaccines. On the other hand, there is ample proof that Vitamin C, in appropriate doses, kills viruses, including rabies virus. http://www.doctoryourself.com/levy.html

        The fact that you include “your” indoor cats (I am more than a bit leery that you have any animals at all) receiving rabies vaccinations, is beyond the pale of idiocy, once one knows the deaths and damages caused by the injections themselves. Even Dr. James A. Shannon, former director of the NIH said: “The only safe vaccine is the one that is never used.”

        Purdue Studies Show Vaccinated Dogs Can Develop Immune …

        Natural Immunity Book by Pat McKay – Cat Problems Advice

        When vaccinated dogs get rabies, the twist that the manufacturers put on it is that a “rare vaccine failure” occurred. But they have no data to provide any proof whatsoever that the vaccine didn’t cause the rabies, because the NIH studies already proved that they DO, and also no proof that the vaccinated dogs were going to get rabies if they hadn’t had the shots.

        Rabies in vaccinated dogs: observations in eastern Nigeria


        Failure of pre- and postexposure rabies vaccinations in a …

        Fatal rabies despite post-exposure prophylaxis Deshmukh D …

        Failure of Rabies Postexposure Prophylaxis In Patients …

        Rabies in Oman: Failed Postexposure Vaccination in a …

        Failures of Post-Exposure Rabies Prophylaxis – ResearchGate

      • Mark says:

        Justice4All you amuse me by accusing me of “counting on the naivety of other readers” and “efforts of twisting must look heroic to pharma masters”. LOL…..hardly. Sham on you for ASSuming. Whoopee 2 vets with their blogs and not much of followers not impressed. Regarding the 1982 article I never said the vaccines were induced…that was the title name you moron. I don’t have to show proof. I read and do in dept research. If anyone is counting of the naivety of other readers it’s you. I suppose you’re going to claim that men never landed on the moon and it was a big hoax. Have a good day make sure no rabid animal bites you in the ass.

      • tina says:

        Justice4All Fuck off If we wish to vaccine our pets it’s our right you asshole. Stuff your fucking bullshit up your ass and stop trolling.

      • Justice4All says:

        No, Tina. Not trolling. Just trying to share what I discovered. But I know that most people won’t look deeper because they just don’t have the mental ability to do so. I’m just sad about the the suffering that is happening because of it. But our freedoms are being taken away on many levels. Cops never barged into people’s homes and shot their dogs when I was young, and dogs were not seized, even if they bit someone. But that, too is just a small part of the whole picture. So, I left the information. People can look at it, or not. Goodbye.

      • tina says:

        Justice4all In your discoveries did you happen to come across that rabies vaccines for cats have improved! Non adjuvanted vs. adjuvanted vaccines….look it up.

      • Justice4All says:

        tina says:

        In your discoveries did you happen to come across that rabies vaccines for cats have improved! Non adjuvanted vs. adjuvanted vaccines….look it up.

        I have done that. Here is the skinny on it:

        “In the meantime, the only thing cat guardians can do while still complying with local laws is to minimize the risk that comes with each rabies vaccine by making sure that their veterinarian only uses the non-adjuvanted Purevax vaccine manufactured by Merial…

        “I will personally be holding off on using the 3-year Purevax product for now, except in specific cases such as TNR programs,” says feline veterinarian Fern Crist, DVM, a former board member of the American Association of Feline Practitioners. “After two or three years, if (IF) the safety record is good, I will feel much more comfortable with it. We’ve seen so many vaccine-related problems in cats over the years – the lesson learned is that caution is both wise and prudent.”

        “December 2015 update: The 3-year-vaccine has been available for more than a year now, and the consensus among veterinarians who have used it appears to be that while there seems to be a slightly higher risk of a systemic reaction than with the 1-year product due to the higher antigen load, the amount of reactivity at the injection site does not appear to be any different….”

        And so, I KNOW that it is difficult to let go of what “authorities” tell us, especially when there are so many other things going on in one’s life, that digging into it deeply yourself seems impossible to do. But my exposure to this came about because of my devotion to animals. As someone who wanted to be a veterinarian, but could not stomach the vivisection labs, I became an antivivisectionist. I knew that something so cruel and awful could not produce anything good. The “authorities,” however, kept telling me that it did.

        But then I was told about a book which had been suppressed in countries all over the world. And by suppressed, I mean the release of that book was sabotaged. It got pulled back from the bookstores as soon as it arrived, and made to disappear, in 1978. Of course, after that, the publisher would no longer touch it, so the author republished, but the book never did make it into bookstores or libraries. And THAT was my first lesson in deep corruption, and the lies we are fed. The information in that book came from doctors, medical journals, press releases which were then also silenced – and part of that book was about vaccinations. I had never heard anything bad about vaccines before that, and if I had not done the research I did after that, I would never have known how to connect the dots about all damage caused by (and the ineffectiveness of) vaccines. That book, by the way, which caused me to start researching the subject, is “Slaughter of The Innocent,” by Hans Ruesch. I am told that http://www.PeopleforReason.org will be giving some copies away for free. Tell them you heard about it here, and I’m sure they will send you one.

        It is impossible to convey 35 years of research to those who have never known about this. All I can tell you is that I want to stop as much unnecessary suffering as possible, and over the years I have come to realize that vaccines are made of poisons, and they damage, and sometimes destroy, immune systems Even before getting my hands on “Slaughter of The Innocent,” I was rescuing animals in an era when vaccines were just starting to be pushed, and so I had experience in comparing vaccinated with unvaccinated dogs. And when all the other variables were the same (food, environment, etc.), the vaccinated dogs were getting the diseases, and the unvaccinated dogs weren’t “catching” it from them, even though I was told the exact opposite by the “authorities.”

        So, that’s all, except, as mentioned in the beginning, all of these ‘laws’ (including the ones that give police authority to enter your home without a warrant and kill your dogs, just because they are there) are becoming ever more oppressive, and we must not allow these violations of our Constitutional rights.

      • Barkley's Mom says:

        Justice4All, naivety of other readers?”Won’t look deeper because they just don’t have the mental ability to do so”? Do you really think we ALL are so naive and stupid that we can’t make up our own minds what vaccines to give our pets and our children for that matter. I have been vaccinating my dogs and cats for over 40 years and have yet to have one suffer any ill effects! Around here it happens to be the law to vaccinate against rabies if you want to license your pets and should we need to board them the other vaccines are needed. Vaccines have save many lives and kept people and animals from getting ill, Nothing you have said here changes my thinking and I don’t think I am naive and I KNOW I have the “mental ability” to understand what I am doing!

      • Justice4All says:

        Barkley’s Mom,

        The damage can range from allergies, skin problems, and ear infections, to cancer and auto immune disorders and so much more. In the long range, genetic damage is done. Most people don’t know how to connect the dots because they are not given the information, and won’t know how if they don’t have the connections to be able to do the research. Symptoms can show up from seconds to many years later. It is impossible to share 35 years of research in one post. Please at least read the links that have been provided. It IS important to know this.

      • Barkley's Mom says:

        Justice4all, yes that’s what is said about immunizations for humans too, and yet many deadly diseases have been all but eliminated because we immunized our children (my generation was the polio vaccine). I have read your propaganda ( yes I do have the mental ability to do so).In this day and age of the internet, all the information pro and con is out there and if people aren’t able to find it, they aren’t bothering to look! As I said before, I have been vaccinating my pets for 40+ years, I prefer to try and keep my pets from getting distemper, parvo, rabies, etc. than to see them get sick and then try to cure these horrible diseases, most pets that haven’t been vaccinated don’t have much of a chance! Have a nice day, and carry on, I’m sure you will find some believers, and save their dogs from the maladies you say they are getting from vaccinations, but is it worth it if they have to be put to sleep because they haven’t had their rabies shot and bit someone?

    • Justice4All says:

      “but is it worth it if they have to be put to sleep because they haven’t had their rabies shot and bit someone?”

      Which was exactly my point about oppressive laws, and the fact that they are escalating. We can unite and fight back, or it will continue to get worse.

      I was recently listening to former members of Scientology, and how just a few of them finally broke away after years, even decades, of having been under the mental conditioning of that cult. And most people in that cult, no matter what you tell them, will defend it to their death. However, as big as Scientology appears to have grown, it is just a microcosm of what goes on in the world.

      People are repeating the words of the Pharmaceutical Empire without ever having been exposed to the truth, which has been quite successfully buried by intertwined industries ( oil, agribusiness, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, vivisection, medical mafia cartel, and more) which have overtaken not only the media, but governments.

      If we are going to break free, like those individuals who are coming forward out of Scientology, it is important to look at all sides, and then weigh what information comes to us from brave individuals who willingly risk everything to tell the truth, and what information comes to us from those who are guarding trillions of dollars in profits and are willing to destroy lives in order to further their own agenda.

      Re: polio There are many sources of intentionally suppressed information. I’ll give you this one.

      Suzanne_humphries_dissolving_illusions … – Jeffrey Dach MD
      ii Dissolving Illusions Disease, Vaccines, and the Forgotten History Suzanne Humphries, MD

      What happened to the big killer (and that’s how my mother’s generation remembered it) of the 1800’s and very early 1900’s, scarlet fever? It disappeared without vaccination, and before the implementation of antibiotics. Just one small example in the bigger picture.

      More history, going back 100-150 years

      The Hadwen Documents – A Case Against Vaccination

      The Golden Calf by Charles W Forward – WHALE

      Horrors of Vaccination Exposed and Illustrated – VacTruth

      • Pamela Garlisch says:

        Funny you should mention that scarlet fever “disappeared” early in the 20th century……I contracted scarlet fever as a child in the 1950’s and was cured with an antibiotic. I guess it didn’t totally disappear as you say.

      • Barkley's Mom says:

        I had Scarlet Fever as a child also, I also had Measles, Rubella, Mumps, Chicken Pox, all of which my children were vaccinated against and never had to suffer through. Small Pox is no longer a threat because of vaccinations. I fail to see how comparing your cause to the Scientology nut cases has anything to do with this subject. You don’t want to vaccinate your pets and children then you take the risks involved with watching you precious pup die of Parvo or Distemper. Your children getting Measles which has proven to be fatal to some. That is YOUR choice, I don’t appreciate you trying to stuff your beliefs down my throat!

      • linda says:

        My brother contracted scarlet fever in 1968. Frankly I don’t give a rats ass what you’re peddling. I’ll stick to what I know from doing my research and experiences.

  9. susispot says:

    If they shot through a closed door, how did they know there wasn’t a human in their with them? This is insanity, plain and simple.

  10. Elaine Briden says:

    I agree…that judge needs to be removed from the bench, its clear he’s biased against dogs, or pitbull Rottweiler types. Those cops are a disgrace to the human race to be proud of how many family pets they’ve killed.

  11. Sherry says:

    Oh, judge, the only bench you belong on is one in your own back yard, with your stupid redneck backwards view on dogs. They are no more than CONTRABAND to you? You need to step down dude, because you are extremely out of touch. You have taken the state of Michigan back in time disgraceful ruling that should be an embarrassment to your family and colleagues. It is downright frightening to me that you are in a position of power, when your brain has obviously been compromised. MICHIGAN, wake up people! Some of you animal lovers need to petition, send letters and make noise about these issues. Don’t vote this antiquated fool back in again; let him drag his knuckles back to his cave. Seriously, this clown is an embarrassment to the justice system.

  12. sherryll shaddock says:

    Police officers across the country are killing dogs (and some people) with impunity. We are reading about police killing peoples dogs almost everyday. It’s my opinion that at least in part this is a result of the vast discrepancy in wealth, our country consists of a few wealthy elites that must be protected from the rest of us (the great unwashed). The police and courts represent the interests of the wealthy, it seems that no matter how egregious the abuse of power, the courts will always side with the police. I don’t see a political answer to these situations as the only way to win an election is with the backing of wealth (since the court decision on citizens united), both political parties are beholden to big money. As ugly as things have become, I believe it will become much worse.

  13. H.Simpell says:

    A warrant for pot??? Just imagining the bloodbath that happened in that home is beyond words.All this carnage is just swept away by a judge .


    Somebody needs to shoot these police officers in the head, and then shoot the judge too or whoever allows these nonesense laws for these morons police SOB to shoot these precious dogs. Karma awaits you, believe me it will come soon enough!

  15. Janette Nordstrom says:

    Dogs are a living breathing animal that does deserve to live. The owners are the responsible one so ticket them for not keeping the laws!

  16. Whitney says:


    Ok i get that The dogs were not licensed, but they couldn’t serve her papers take her to jail? They had to shoot the dogs right in and they’re like pieces of shit they are? NOT RIGHT!!!!

    Shooting the dog through the door….. WTF????? How Can he even do that and get away with it? What if there was a kid in that bathroom?

    And the one cop who has shot 73 dogs in his career….. needs to be fired! 73 dogs? And you don’t think that he is power happy? Or is he a big f*cking pussy who is scared of dogs who just grabs his gun and shoots? Either way. Fired that piece of shit!!!


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] all know that if there’s one thing the constabulary loves more than shooting our dogs or stomping an expectant mother until her baby dies, it’s donuts. Cops and creme sticks go […]

  2. […] all know that if there’s one thing the constabulary loves more than shooting our dogs or stomping an expectant mother until her baby dies, it’s donuts. Cops and creme sticks go […]

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *