– “They took my baby from me,” Gary Brockler said.
Brockler's seven year old Pit Bull Diablo was like a son to him.
“He was a great dog,” said close friend Michael Casserino.
“Very friendly, he gets excited when he sees people but he's never mean,” neighbor Erin Arnold said.
But Monroe County Sheriff deputies had a different perception.
The department says they responded to Brockler's home for a house party Friday night when they were approached by what they* say was an aggressive dog.
“There were multiple shots--bang, bang, bang-- and at first I thought it was fireworks, and I looked outside and saw some sheriffs and I heard Gary crying,” Arnold said.
Deputies had shot Diablo.
“I just ran to him and got down, he was kind of starring at me,” Brockler said. “He was still breathing and I just held him until he stopped breathing and I just told him I loved him.”
Bullets shot through Brockler's garage shattered a window.
When neighbor Erin Arnold came out to see what the commotion was, she says she got a less than desirable response.
“I opened my door and asked what's going on and he [deputy] said, ‘It's none of your business nosey,’” Arnold said.
All this for a house party Brockler says never took place.
“I was the only one home, no cars in the driveway, none on the street except for mine,” Brockler said.
“If they were one door over, they could have shot my dog and I'm just shocked,” Arnold said.
Now Brockler wants answers.
“I will fight this. I will be broke. I will sell my house and live in a cardboard box until I get justice,” Brockler said. “This cop was wrong, they did nothing right.”
A rally is planned at the Monroe County Sheriff’s headquarters for Tuesday morning.
The sheriff's department says an investigation is ongoing, which is standard when a deputy fires his weapon.
The department is standing by its deputies, saying their actions were justified.