The former Sulphur Police officer indicted on one count of aggravated cruelty to animals - a felony offense - in connection to the fatal shooting of a dog during the April arrest of two men in the parking lot of the Southwest Daily News office turned himself in to the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office on Friday afternoon.
The former Sulphur Police officer indicted on one count of aggravated cruelty to animals - a felony offense - in connection to the fatal shooting of a dog during the April arrest of two men in the parking lot of the Southwest Daily News office turned himself in to the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office on Friday afternoon. A grand jury handed down the indictment against Brian Thierbach late Thursday and a warrant for his arrest was released soon afterwards. After being booked in to the Calcasieu Correctional Center, Thierbach was released out on bond, which had been set at $20,000 by Judge Kent Savoie.
It was during the morning of April 28 that Thierbach, then an officer with the SPD, responded to a call from the Southwest Daily News regarding two suspicious men in the office's parking lot. Brandon Carpenter, 28, and Logan Laliberte, 21, both of Maine, had reportedly gained entrance into the back of one of the newspaper's box trucks in order, they said, to get out of the rain. While the two men were on the ground and handcuffed, Thierbach shot and killed Carpenter's dog, who went by the name Arzy Kenzington, because, he claimed, the dog tried to bite him. A witness at the scene, SWDN Circulations Manager Eric Midkiff, has maintained that Arzy never attacked Thierbach. The incident soon afterwards gained heated local and national attention.
In early May, an internal investigation into the shooting by the SPD, with the assistance of the CPSO, found that Thierbach had violated the SPD’s policy and procedures regarding use of force, personal conduct and behavior. No final disciplinary action was taken due to Thierbach’s resignation from the department on May 7. The CPSO then took up a criminal investigation into the incident and handed their findings over to the District Attorney’s office on May 27. The case then went before the grand jury.
On Thursday evening, Carpenter told the Southwest Daily News that he was feeling a little overwhelmed and emotional after hearing about the indictment.
“They came to the right decision. Justice will be served,” said Carpenter, who also reaffirmed his determination to “see this through to the end.”
Carpenter and Laliberte still face charges of vehicular trespassing stemming from their arrests in April.