#JusticeforDixie petition demanding firing of cop who fatally shot harmless golden retriever goes viral
Calls for justice in the senseless killing of a family dog at the hands of an Ohio police officer — in front of the pooch’s shocked family — are being heard across the world.
Dixie, a 3-and-a-half-year-old golden retriever and Labrador mix, was shot dead by Elliott Palmer of the Lorain Police Department last Sunday.
Palmer has since been placed on leave, but a petition demanding his removal from the force has gained 25,000 signatures with words of support coming in from all over.
“Our story is going global,” Dixie’s owner, Tammie Kerns, said in a message to The Post. “We have been requested to give an interview to countries like New Zealand.”
Lisa Hughes, a medical assistant and animal lover from Lorain who didn’t know the Kerns family until they met at a rally for Dixie on Friday, started the petition after watching the heart-breaking footage from Palmer’s body camera.
The video shows the devastating moment the playful pup, who had gotten loose with Kerns’ three other dogs, ran toward Palmer, who raised his gun and shot her several times.
Dixie scrambled to get away but fell in the middle of the street before dragging herself to the curb.
“I just was motivated and felt compelled to speak out on behalf of the family and the dog,” Hughes told The Post. “I felt that they were probably not in any position to do anything at the moment because they were just trying to get through it.
“At least we could get something, some awareness, and get the story out there in the community and across the state. I was thinking it would just stay here within Ohio.”
Hughes shared the petition on all of her social media platforms, and messages of support have been pouring in from places as far away as Germany.
She plans to take the signatures to Lorain Mayor Jack Bradley, who has yet to address Dixie’s murder. His office did not immediately respond to an inquiry from The Post.
“I fully support the law and our law enforcement but we can’t have this kind of rogue police officer out here just pulling his weapon and firing four bullets into the air, down the street where any child could have been hit,” Hughes said.
Palmer was sworn onto the force in April 2021, according to a Twitter post by the Lorain Police Department, which linked to an Instagram post that has since been deleted.
Dixie’s death is “under investigation,” the department told The Post Friday afternoon without offering further details.
“It’s great to see the concern from the community. It doesn’t have to be flattering, but it tells us exactly what concerns our community,” Lorain Police Lt. Jacob Morris said at Friday’s rally, according to News 5 Cleveland.
“I want to offer our condolences to the Kerns family; regardless of the situation, they’re dealing with the loss of a family member, and it hurts to even say that we were involved in that.”
Now, Kerns, her family and supporters are waiting patiently for the investigation to wrap up, but their work continues.
A memorial ride will be held on Sunday, exactly a week from the time Dixie was killed and will travel around the Kerns’ neighborhood and the police department.