HUNT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – A North Texas firefighter’s social media post goes viral, but not necessarily in a good way. The man posted a picture of two dead dogs. The caption said he killed the animals after warning his neighbor to keep them off his property.
The story has put a very bright spotlight on Royse City, Texas.
Sources tell CBS 11 News a Hunt County Constable is now investigating the case.
According to a family friend, the incident happened at Tim Conatser’s barn. That’s where the dogs allegedly attacked Conatser’s livestock and the property-owner shot and killed them.
The outcry came after Conatser made a post on Facebook that included a picture of the two dead dogs on his property.
Conatser’s caption on the photo said, “Somebody didn’t put any truth [to] my warning. Keep your damn dogs on your property.”
CBS 11 reached out to Conatser, but he hasn’t spoken with us yet.
We still don’t know who owns the dogs, only that they belonged to a neighbor.
Family friend Kevin Forester said Conatser found the dogs inside his barn a couple of days earlier, while they were attacking his calf, and recognized them as belonging to his neighbor.
“So he went over to his neighbor’s and told him that his dogs was getting in his barn and attacking his animals, to please ya know keep ‘em at home, put ‘em on a leash, build a fence, do something,” recalled Forester.
The friend says Conatser told him the neighbor didn’t care. We left messages with neighbors in the area, but haven’t heard back.
There is a state statute that says a dog or coyote that attacks livestock, or domestic animals, may be killed by someone who witnesses it or the animals’ owner, and can’t be held liable for damages by the dog’s owner.
Conatser is a volunteer firefighter with Union Valley. Union Valley Fire Chief Edward Ragsdale says Conatser realizes he made a mistake. “He says he apologized and he’s guilty of posting this on Facebook. He’s young and he recognizes what he did was wrong.”
But the internet posting has resulted in the department receiving death threats from as far away as Europe. But Chief Ragsdale said all of the comments weren’t bad. “We’ve had comments all the way from England, Portugal, Canada, a lot of them negative. I would say for every negative comment, I’d say we had five in our favor.”
Conatser contacted Chief Ragsdale Wednesday and asked that he be removed from the department rotation for now, because of the threats.
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