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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Filer Dog Shooting Makes International Headlines, Prompts City Recall Effort

Posted By on Thu, Apr 10, 2014 at 12:07 PM

Filer police officer Tarek Hassani face-to-face with Hooch, a black Labrador retriever, moments before he fatally shot the dog in February. - FILER POLICE DEPARTMENT
  • Filer Police Department
  • Filer police officer Tarek Hassani face-to-face with Hooch, a black Labrador retriever, moments before he fatally shot the dog in February.

The story of a Southern Idaho police officer, a dog and how they led to a recall effort in the small city of Filer is making international news. 

The UK-based Daily Mail is the latest to pick up on the story of Filer police officer Tarek Hassani, who fatally shot a black Labrador named Hooch while serving his owner a citation in February. 

Hassani's actions, which a shooting investigation deemed justified in the face of aggression, prompted outrage in the small town that quickly spread nationally when a dash-cam video of the incident (warning: graphic content) was made public by the Twin Falls Times-News.

Outrage turned to outcry when the Filer City Council decided to keep Hassani on the payroll, prompting a petition drive calling for the recall of all four City Council members and Mayor Rick Dunn. The Times-News reported April 8 that enough signatures had been gathered—more than 20 for each elected officials—to move forward to the next step: gathering at least 201 signatures on a full petition to trigger a recall election. Should the election go forward, City Council members and Dunn would be ousted if they receive more recall votes than they did in the past election. For instance, Dunn was put in office with 203 votes; he would be recalled by 204.

If all five officials are removed from office, it would fall to Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter to appoint enough council members to make a quorum, who would then appoint a mayor for the town of 2,500.

Petitioners have 75 days to gather the necessary signatures to prompt the recall election.

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