Abbeville family's dog shot, killed - FOX Carolina 21

Abbeville family's dog shot, killed; shooter claims he was defending family

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Elvis was shot and killed after he wandered onto a nearby yard. (FOX Carolina) Elvis was shot and killed after he wandered onto a nearby yard. (FOX Carolina)
ABBEVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

An Upstate dog is dead after his owners said he was shot and then beaten with the butt of a gun, but the shooter says he was defending his family from a strange animal on his property.

It happened Saturday morning when Beth Williams' dog Elvis ran off into a nearby yard. The family says they heard two gunshots, and when they called for Elvis to come back, they said they saw a man beating the dog in the head with the butt of his shotgun. Elvis died on the way to the hospital.

"I want to press charges," said Beth Williams.

"I'm slowly getting less mournful and more furious with this man," said her daughter, Alyssa Williams, who was Elvis' owner.

The man said he shot the dog after it wandered into his yard and that he was trying to protect his kids. He said he did not beat the dog with the gun but with a small stick to try to get him off the property. He said he was sorry for the way it turned out, but he was acting within the law.

Abbeville County does have a leash law, and Sheriff Ray Watson said if someone feels legitimately threatened by an animal on their property, they may be able to defend themselves with deadly force.

The sheriff's office is investigating to see if any criminal activity occurred.

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