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13 Feb, 2018 17:51

Police kill suicidal 84yo veteran who faced losing home in support dogs dispute

Police kill suicidal 84yo veteran who faced losing home in support dogs dispute

An 84-year-old  veteran was shot dead after wielding a gun at officers in Florida. He was facing eviction from his apartment because of his two service dogs.

Raymond Bishop threatened to kill himself on Monday in a telephone call so four police officers were called to Hidden Grove apartments in Homestead, Florida,  according to the Miami Herald.  

An altercation ensued and Bishop was shot dead by police, Miami-Dade Police spokesman Detective Argemis Colome told local news outlets.  The veteran was pronounced dead at the scene.

"These officers begged this gentleman to put the weapon down," said Florida Police Benevolent Association President John Rivera, as quoted by the Miami Herald. "They had no choice.”

Bishop was fighting eviction from the Hidden Grove apartment complex for “harboring unauthorized pet dogs.” One of the animals attacked another resident at the complex, according to the lawsuit. The case had entered mediation but talks between the two sides had broken down, according to the court record.

Bishop, 84, relied on his dogs for emotional support. The dogs had a “tremendously favorable influence” on Bishop, said psychiatrist Dr. Ernesto Grenier of the Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Mr. Bishop’s pets, in this case, have provided invaluable emotional therapeutic benefit,” Grenier wrote in a letter filed in the court record.

The dogs were named Roxie and Ranger and weigh 13lb and 30lb respectively.

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