A Baltimore police officer who slit the throat of a dog that was tethered at the time will receive $45,000 in back pay for the months he spent suspended after the incident, the Baltimore Sun reports. Previously, Officer Jeffrey G. Bolger was acquitted on charges of animal cruelty.
Bolger killed Nala, a seven-year-old Shar-Pei owned by Sarah Gossard, after Nala escaped from Gossard’s yard in June 2014. Nala bit a woman’s hand, leaving what the Sun calls a “superficial wound,” and that woman called the police.
Bolger responded to the scene along with another officer, and the pair tethered Nala to a “dog-control pole,” according to charging documents. Then, the other officer held the dog down, and Bolger cut its throat. Witnesses reported hearing Bolger saying “I’m going to [expletive] gut this thing,” as he got out of his police car.
Bolger was suspended without pay for 10 months and charged with mutilating an animal, animal cruelty, and misconduct in office. He was acquitted of the criminal charges in November. A judge also ruled in his favor on the issue of back pay, saying he was acting in the interest of safety. Bolger has since retired, a move his attorney claims the city forced him to make.