"Good guy" with a gun shoots woman in the leg


Jeezus, if the force of the impact scared off the dog AND killed a woman shot in the leg, what kind of gun was he using?

The shooter’s name wasn’t Detective Harry Callahan, by any chance, was it?


Did he tell the dog to “get off his lawn” afterward?


Holy fucking shit! I had no idea that would happen. Thanks for sparing us the pics.

While I don’t have a hate on for Pit Bulls like some do, I have some wariness about them and other dog breeds. While I agree that Pit Bulls aren’t necessarily more likely to bite, if they DO, their strength, especially for their size, is so much greater than many other dogs they are going to do a lot more damage. I know those little yappy dogs are supposed to be more bite prone, but no way they could rip off an 8 year olds arm. -shudder- Though even smaller dogs can cause a lot of other damage.

I guess while we are telling stories, I was at a great aunts house and they had a little curly haired, small dog. I guess while it was outside with other kids another dog attacked it. And distantly related uncle threw his pocket knife at it and broke the blade when he missed (derp). I think they took it to the vet and it was ok, but that was the only dog attack I was sorta witness to, but not really.

Here is a video of a cat and a mouse who are friends - which obviously shatters the stereotype and clearly one can have their pet mouse play with cats and expect nothing to go wrong.


Just typical badly socialized American pets. It’s not as unusual as you think, really, although my life has admittedly been a bad soap opera.

I mean, if we do it like the Bacon number or Erdos number, then Nikki, Emily and I have Dog Mauling numbers of Zero because we’ve been permanently disfigured, although thanks to modern medicine you can’t see our scars unless you are exceptionally observant. Well, you can see mine, but they are minor by comparison, I only have a dozen or so toothmarks* on me.

Emily was a normal preschooler, related to me by marriage and a friend of my daughter’s, Nikki is a federal judge among other things, and I am obviously a cantankerous and outspoken curmudgeon. Let’s assume each of us has Dunbar’s number (roughly 150 or something like that) friends and acquaintances who now have Dog Mauling numbers of One. Plus everyone who enters Nikki’s courtroom and all the doctors that worked on us and all Emily’s teachers are at One.

Now, I’m no mathematician, but given the sheer number of dog attacks per year, I’d guess that nobody in the USA has a Dog Mauling Number greater than five. Nearly everyone’s going to be at three or less. Seriously. If there’s 50 people in the room, odds are good that at least one of them has been attacked by a dog. They just aren’t wearing a sign that says so, and they probably know better than to mention it around American dog lovers, who contain a significantly nutso fringe.

Note I’ve been careful to say American in several key places. I have seen the way dogs are raised and regarded in England and Scotland, and believe me it’s very very different. People are at much less risk there.

The details about this particular case are starting to sound like the woman wasn’t actually being mauled when she was shot, and now the shooter is apparently saying the gun just went off somehow, he didn’t try to shoot anything? I am wondering if anybody did a blood alcohol test on the man…

* nonhuman toothmarks that is.


I wonder what the significance of a degrees-of-connection number is, because I’m thinking the average degree between any 2 people on the US is likely 5, with almost everyone 7 at most.

I think we need to get on to the maths of this, immediately.


The CDC data, as well as the AVMA data, compiled from hospital records, do not support that dog bites are on the rise. I’m very curious what you mean by “research into dog attacks” and where you got the information that “the US government has curtailed” (pun intended?) it.

Dogs are animals, yes. But both the alpha thing and the carnivore thing have been superseded by additional research, both behavioral and genetic, showing that dogs are more cooperative (as opposed to hierarchical) than previously thought and are almost as omnivorous as humans (unlike cats). In fact, excessive “alpha-ing” can teach the dog that physically overpowering others is an appropriate greeting.

I am sorry you’ve had so many horrific dog experiences. Pepper spray is an extremely good deterrent for dogs and a more reasonable thing to have on your person whenever you’re out and about and want to save someone from a dog attack. Most bites occur in the home but most bites outside the home happen to postal carriers; those I’ve know recommend pepper spray very highly.


What part of “feral pit bull” is not clear to you? It’s been explained several times in this thread, and there’s plenty of information available to google.


This dog may not have been kept by anyone. Inner-city Detroit is basically Mad Max, and feral dog packs are a thing there.


Except it turns out she wasn’t even being mauled - at least not at the time he shot her.

The thing that caused her death was the gun in her neighbour’s hand when he had what I would neutrally term a ‘negligent discharge’.

He was apparently standing between her and the dog at the time so he somehow managed to shoot a woman standing behind him.

He then carries her to the porch and, rather than deciding that he and guns are perhaps not made for each other, fires off a few more shots (intentionally this time) - not surprisingly these shots miss their target - which is hardly surprising given the physical and mental state the poor guy must have been in at that point. Adrenaline and shock do not make for good aim.

Bearing in mind that he has the time to do all of this, it is fairly clear that the dog was not actively attacking at that stage.

It’s hard to see how this case isn’t yet another example of how gun ownership is in fact actively dangerous to you and your neighbours.

We can at least be pleased that Mr Williams survived the encounter and his dealings with the police.


If one were to gunge by local news, women are at far greater risk of being murdered by their domestic partners (or as in this case, their neighbor) in Detroit than men are at risk of being murdered by police.


I suspect that is true everywhere.

It’s just nice to see a story from America where a black man with a gun doesn’t end up shot by the police.


Police murdering black men in significant numbers with little to no provocation isn’t a thing Detroit police have a reputation for.


To be honest, all I know about Detroit is that there used to be good music and lots of car jobs, then OCP moved in and there was something about a giant killer robot and now I learn that there are feral dog packs.


Thank you for the well written and courteous query and for appreciating my weak humor. This thread has been surprisingly coherent and civil given that it concerns a train wreck of broken American gun culture and broken American dog culture.

I’ll try to answer your question, but it’s more complicated than I can explain in a readable post, so I encourage you to check it out yourself!

The American Veterinary Medical Association is the funding engine for a political lobbying group called AVMAPAC. If you’ve ever wondered why veterinary medicine is regulated so differently from other medical practices, now you know - it’s because AVMAPAC’s governmental relations office in Washington, D.C., carefully monitors federal and state legislative efforts concerning animals and “meets with members of Congress and their staff to advocate for legislation that will enhance the veterinary medical field and help block the ones that will not”[1].

When you check this stuff out, you’ll immediately notice there is no co-ordinated reporting of dog attacks in the USA. What little hard data exists comes from a very few inherently biased sources[2] like individual hospitals,[3] animal welfare agencies, veterinarians,[4] and published newspaper reports.[5]

When the controversial 2000 JAVMA paper[6] came out, it notably exposed the need for some nationwide system of accurate reporting, which would remove any uncertainty concerning the relationship between dog breeds and dog behavior.

Now, AVMAPAC openly opposes breed-specific legislation, and openly says they will spend lobbying money to prevent it. What little data is available indicates that breed-specific legislation (typically targeting pit bulls, wolf hybrids, and rotweillers) has a powerful effect on dog attack frequency in the USA, in effect saving real live human infants from death or crippling. Again, AVMA and many dog fancier organizations vociferously and financially oppose BSL.

A website called dogsbite.org[7] has been in something of a tussle with AVMA over this for years; both sides growing increasingly strident and emotional over time. Of the two, dogsbite.org provides far more physical proof; publishing extensive documentation (and gruesome photos) proving the reality of dog attacks, while AVMA in effect simply says “vets are authoritatively experts - we understand dogs and our statements define what reality is.”

Speaking as a person intimately familiar with both dog ownership and dog attacks, I believe AVMA is a morally bankrupt organization actively enabling child molestation and murder by dogs, and dogsbite.org is a fact-based but obsessive crusade almost single-handedly run by a woman named Colleen Lynn[8]. But unlike the rest of this, those are just my personal opinions.

Anyway, dogsbite.org claims that AVMAPAC has successfully prevented federal funding to CDC programs that would help identify the true scope and scale of dog mismanagement in this country, and identify the most effective means of reducing this problem. AVMAPAC, in turn, claims that they have spent vast amounts of money to influence legislation in ways that will optimize the income of American veterinarians.[9]

When dogsbite.org submitted FOIA requests to the CDC to obtain the small amount of incomplete data they do collect, the request was denied with an explicit claim that no such data existed. A later appeal forced the data to be released; here it is - that’s is literally all they collected, and it excludes whole categories of fatal attacks as well as all non-fatal attacks, and yet the amount of useful data available concerning dog attacks has gone down, not up, over time[10] You can pull the data yourself and see this is true.

I am looking at the lame CDC data right now. It says the opposite of what you just said. Although, yes, AVMA does say that - but they are demonstrated masters of data cherrypicking, like several other trade protectionist groups I could name.

The only organizations that are doing anything approaching rigorous data collection are all citizen science groups advocating BSL. Since most dog fanciers and veterinarians strongly oppose BSL they will point to this advocacy as a reason the data cannot be believed. However, the data is independently verifiable from published sources and it shows clearly that dog attacks are getting worse and more frequent.

I hope that all this will give you food for thought and perhaps action of your own; it took a great deal more effort to compose this post than a clever bon mot might’ve. I’m sorry I didn’t have time to make it shorter and more informative.

[1] Direct quote from their site. AVMAPAC is the NRA of America’s dog owners.
[2] Biased does not mean they are purposely misrepresenting data. They currently don’t have any unbiased way to do data collection and analysis.
[3] Hospital data is the most reliable, but scarce and subject to selection bias.
[4] Pet maintenance technicians largely deriving their income from treatment of dogs. AVMA says 77% of vets work only with pets and insurance agencies say that claims for treatment of dogs are more frequent and more costly than other pets, by a very large margin.
[5] Typically sensational articles sorted by unpaid interns or volunteers.
[6] Controversial for many reasons, some valid, but too many to list here.
[7] Nominally representing the interests of the thousands of people who have been maimed or disfigured by dog attacks as well as the hundreds of parents whose children have been gruesomely slaughtered.
[8] Lynn was bitten by a pit bull in 2007, and has received online harassment, internet smear campaigns, and physical threats from dog owners who oppose BSL and comprehensive dog attack data collection.
[9] I see no inherent contradiction here.
[10] According to the CDC, who say this has nothing to do with AVMAPAC, but is simply an unfortunate side effect of larger scale data classification efforts.


FWIW, two of my sisters were attacked by neighborhood dogs, though their injuries were not as severe as the ones you’ve related. I do think there are a lot of attacks that are never reported.


Thank you for the detailed and informative response. I’ll check out those sources you recommend. We must have seen different lame pages on the CDC site—I swear I did check first! But I got three 404 pages first and when one finally loaded, I went with it.

I just changed my mind about trying a nuanced add-on to the AVMA situation. My (perhaps too) simple thought: They aren’t completely bad, but really the problem is more with how legislation works. Things would be so much simpler if we could somehow just have a Don’t Be a Dick law.

I am against BSL for two reasons. First, because I think it’s only effective in the short-term. Places that have it often find they keep having to add breeds, because they’re targeting the wrong end of the leash. When I was a kid, the sort of people who got a dog as a surrogate penis protection had German shepherds (I was bitten three times, myself), which are now considered a smart and amiable breed that make a nice companion. And that is true. Now it’s pitbulls, previously considered safe with children now in many areas overbred for aggression, with often tragic results. It would certainly not surprise me if the guy whose GSD bit me now owns a pit.

The other problem is for the targeters—the people who will be burdened with deciding which dogs need to leave town. Many, if not most, people don’t give much thought to dog breeds and just assume the dog they’re seeing is one they’ve heard a lot about. If you’re in the ER getting stitches, nobody’s going to fault you for being imprecise in your dog identification (not even me). Newspaper reporters also may have other things in mind than dog breed, the more so in that editors don’t send the experienced, hard-bitten news hound to cover a dog bite story, they send the wet-behind-the-ears cub reporter who likely won’t even think to ask. (A very well remembered case in San Francisco of a woman killed in an elevator by a neighbor’s two dogs comes to mind. They were generally reported as pitbulls, but were in fact Cane Corsos. The anti-pitbull outrage sparked by the report would not have prevented their living in that town.)

Owners of “dangerous dogs” (quotes because the label sadly functions like marketing to a certain type of owner) are less likely to spay and neuter and more likely to be half-assed about containing the dogs, resulting in plenty of little half-breed oopses. The lucky puppies will be given away or sold in a parking lot, often to someone who knows even less, and eight months later, you get another dozen oopses from each of those five or six survivors. Are they covered by the BSL? Only if they look a certain way? How they act is more important, and it has been shown that people- and animal-aggression are separately inheritable traits that are not linked to coat length, color, muzzle length, or even that sad Labrador mutation that makes them always hungry.

I’m not sure what the solution is. Sometimes focusing on a seemingly unrelated rule can help. In my city, they found that cracking down on dog-fighting rings gave them a legal way to get warrants for suspected gang hangouts; then they realized that people running dog fights are not generally scrupulous about other laws, either, and kept going. The FBI now tracks animal cruelty cases, because it’s a pretty reliable marker for violence against people. Domestic abusers almost always beat their dogs, and I have read that most serial killers started with animal torture. Maybe it’s as simple as more enforcement of leash and licensing laws, making it less convenient to have an uncontrolled animal.

Some home insurers are starting to require that a dog have passed the Canine Good Citizen test in order to be covered. It’s certainly no guarantee, but it does require enough training to show basic control and could weed out some of the less than fully assed.

More children are killed by guns than by dogs, and guns really do have no other purpose than to kill.


Yea, dogs are kind of the opposite of kids, in my experience. I don’t know how many adults (teachers, etc.) have said of my kids “what delightful and respectful children you have,” my thought being “WTF, you’re speaking about my kids?”

In terms of repercussions, one of my dogs is pretty obedient and well-trained… meaning she won’t steal the roast from the table. If – and only if – you happen to be standing near by.

Dogs are pretty smart, but they use that intelligence to figure out what they can get away with. Always.


Sounds an awful lot like kids! [winky face]


I personally am not too concerned about Breed Specific Laws, although I understand both sides of the debate well enough.

Your comments about law enforcement in your city are very interesting. What little data we do have, indicates that whatever dog breed is the favorite of violent criminals in any place and time, is the breed of dog that is most dangerous. Right now that’s certainly pit bulls, but that’s not always been true. I think that if every pit bull was euthanized and no other actions taken, someone would just create or find something equally deadly. Perhaps a new variant of King Charles Spaniel, I hear they are very vicious :roll_eyes:

But anyway I like science. I am sure that if we seriously collected and dispassionately analyzed the data - instead of keeping our heads in the sand or taking the word of a trade organization that has clear conflicts of interest - we’d have a better chance of finding the best path forward.

Oh, I can totally relate! I had a couple of parent/teacher conferences where I was like “Erhm, are you sure you aren’t reading the wrong files or something?”


Here is a video of a cat and a mouse who are friends - which obviously shatters the stereotype and clearly one can have their pet mouse play with cats and expect nothing to go wrong.

I dunno, if it takes a genetically modified mouse who can’t fear cats and super chill cat I don’t think the stereotype is budged one ounce!