Washington family fights to overturn ruling deeming their dog dangerous

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A 3-year-old male pit bull has been wrongfully deemed dangerous and is sentenced to be euthanized in Lewis County, Chehalis Washington. It all started in April 2016, when the dog, then named Tank, was accused, along with another dog, of killing some goats and injuring a small pony on a neighbor’s farm. He was marked a dangerous dog.

Unfortunately, Tank’s owner at the time did not fulfill obligations under the county’s dangerous dog laws so Tank was seized and placed in the Lewis County Animal Shelter. While there, Danette York, the Director of the Department of Public Health and Social Services, which oversees the shelter, opted to change Tank’s name to Hank and adopt him out to Jann Propp-Estimo in January 2017. No mention was made of the dog’s previous history and the dangerous dog allegations. She based her decision on Hank’s good behavior and felt he was incorrectly declared dangerous.

Hank lived for 5 happy months with Propp-Estimo, her husband, and her grandson Buddy. Then on May 9, 2017 the Lewis County Prosecutors Office found out about Tank/Hank’s “illegal” adoption. They showed up at Propp-Estimo’s door to seize Hank and return him to Lewis County Animal Shelter while a judge decided his fate. On June 7th, 2017 Adam Karp, the attorney representing Jann Propp-Estimo, filed a petition to declassify Hank as a dangerous dog. This also set in motion an amendment to the current county dangerous animal code. This amendment would establish a process that would allow an individual to appeal a dangerous dog declaration. The amendment was passed.

Also, new evidence surfaced in the case at the June 17,2017 hearing. A neighbor/witness stated she never saw Hank attack any of the goats; it was mainly the second dog. The owner of the livestock also stated he didn’t want to press charges because he viewed the incident on a dashcam in his truck which reversed his previous decision about Hank/Tank. He told the Sheriff he did not want to press charges nor did he want Hank/Tank to die.

Despite the approved amendment and the new evidence presented in Hank’s favor, on June 19, Judge Buzzard of the Lewis County District Court in Chehalis, Washington ignored these factors and ordered Hank put to death in 48 hours. That decision was appealed to Judge Edwards of Grays Harbor County Superior Court with the hope of reversing Judge Buzzard’s death sentence.  Judge Edward had the power to free Hank and close the case but he didn’t do it. Instead, he chose not to overturn Judge Buzzard’s ruling. On September 25, he signed the order affirming Judge Buzzard’s decision, sentencing Hank to death.

Hank has been granted a stay of execution pending further appeal. Hank has been imprisoned for almost 5 months at the Lewis County Animal Shelter. He is not exercised and only allowed to visit his family through a barrier of chain link and bars. He is being held without cause and without any one pressing charges. This case against Hank is nothing more than a vendetta by the prosecuting attorney and the judge and their irrational desire to see Hank killed. This is wrong, unethical and cruel.

Help Hank get back to his family.

Sign the petition to allow Hank to have visits with his family outside of his cage.

For updates on Hank’s case and to donate toward the mounting legal costs visit the website 

Also, follow the case on Hank’s Facebook pages:










13 replies
  1. EB says:

    I’ve been following this story. These Judges are wrong, crooked and corrupt. If they follow thru with this. I hope these Judges meet a very bad fate. This is so wrong on all levels!

  2. Me' says:

    If Hank is murdered in my personal opinion back to the judges should be hung. And where the hell is the ASPCA and or the SPCA at and why aren’t they helping innocent dogs that are convicted of crimes they did not do

  3. Barkley's Mom says:

    Petition signed and this is totally absurd. Why the prosecuting attorney and the judge want this dog dead when the evidence proves he did nothing wrong is just NOT RIGHT! What is wrong with them, they are supposed to want justice, this is NOT!

  4. pamela bolton says:

    What in the heck is wrong with Judge Edwards of Grays Harbor Count? Doesn’t he have the balls to make his own decisions? Judge Buzzard is nothing but a dog hating barbarian trying to show his power. Judge Edwards should have stood up for right. Hope he has a hard time sleeping at night by giving in to this INJUSTICE on an innocent dog. And you wonder why WE THE PEOPLE hate the justice system, because THERE IS NO JUSTICE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Star Shelley says:

    These,is so ridiculous, what t he he’ll is wrong with the that stupid judge and ignorant attorney! It’s all about power.where i s ASPCA and SPCA . They need to step up to the plate and help these poort soul caught in the middle of power in that community.

  6. Wendy Specht says:

    Unless you can put extreme pressure on the system in place, they will have no incentive to change their minds. By now they are aware that people are not pleased with the courts decisions, and for the most part they will take the attitude that once the case has gone through the courts that people will forget about it and they can go about “business as usual “. The problem is, that in the process, they are willingly destroying a family, a dog, and a child is suffering. This needs to stop, we need an out cry so loud and from every direction, somehow we need to get more powerful individuals involved, someone that can slam the hammer down. The only thing I can think of is Olympia and the news media (all of the news media). But maybe I am wrong. Maybe we should all go to the judge, prostate ourselves on the ground and beg and plead for forgiveness FOR getting upset or angry about the whole thing. And maybe then he Will forgive all of us and set hank free.

  7. Ann Radband says:

    I’ve been watching this shocking case unfold from the UK for weeks, I have been sufficiently moved to email my protest on many occasions as the situation has escalated into the fiasco it has now become. I cannot get my head around the reality that this ‘case’ has been based upon flawed facts throughout with so much crucial information (which would have benefited Hank and his family) having been deliberately waived … and with so many contradictions. It’s almost as though the powers-that-be actually WANT to murder this poor, innocent creature (hmmm surely not?) so that unsafe decisions made earlier can be hastily and shamefully rubber stamped as speedily as possible. I’ve said many times if I were a USA citizen I would have Twittered the USA President by now, gone right to the top, maybe people have already done so? At least such a Tweet might catch the eye of someone significant who may intervene. I know I would have contacted our PM and the Queen by now in sheer desperation, I absolutely would! Sometimes for the greater good it has to be recognised that pride has to be swallowed so that justice can override injustice …. and that time is NOW! FREE HANK AND SEND HIM HOME TO HIS LOVING OWNERS TODAY, NOT TOMORROW OR THE NEXT DAY BUT RIGHT NOW … before Hank becomes sick with depression and/or his family become sick with all the stress and the financial anxiety. Oh and remember there is a 9 year old boy in this equation who has had his pet dog confiscated by the state for no good reason with a view to kill it, what a great example to set that little boy in terms of respecting USA law in the future.

  8. Nancy Raymond says:

    Sweet Jesus exactly how much evidence does this friggin’ judge need to declassify Hank? This is no more than a corrupt judicial system that has its head so far up its ass it couldn’t find a way out with a map. Hank deserves to be home w/his family and this idiot of a judge should be sitting in a cage. RIDICULOUS.

  9. Pamela Garlisch says:

    Is there somebody close to this town in Washington that can follow up and keep following up for this poor dog? Evidently there is nobody listening to petitions so get the TV stations and radio stations involved! In my area we have Channel 5 Investigates.


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