HONOLULU — A private security guard who in March fatally shot a family dog at a Hawaii airport will not face criminal charges — at least for now, Attorney General Doug Chin said.
The decision to not press charges followed an independent review and an evaluation of “relevant criminal laws and legal defenses available in the state of Hawaii,” Chin said.
“At this time, the evidence is insufficient to prove criminal charges beyond a reasonable doubt,” he said.
The guards’ company, Securitas Security Services USA Inc., declined to comment but previously said the dog was “aggressively barking and lunging at tourists in the area.” The company said the 2-year-old, pit bull mix was loose in an “unauthorized public area” near the international arrivals terminal and the Hawaiian Airlines drive-thru check-in area when it tried to attack the officer, who was injured while trying to avoid the dog.
“Despite repeated requests from the officer to the owners to restrain the pursuing pit bull, the owners were unable to control the loose animal,” the company stated. “The officer attempted to evade the pit bull’s pursuit by moving backwards and sideways. The officer attempted to seek protection by using the coconut trees in that area as a barrier. As the pit bull lunged toward him, the officer fired a single shot at close range, in self-defense to prevent being attacked.”
The security officer had no immediate comment after hearing about Chin’s announcement.
The dog’s owner, Leisha Ramos, 25, said Chin’s decision is “very unfair.”
“It’s heart breaking and discouraging,” Ramos said. “I would have thought it’s the airport, they seem so high on security but they don’t have cameras. … It’s just unfortunate.”
Chin apologized and was “really nice” about the situation, Ramos said.