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Police: Pahrump man shot dogs to protect chicken coop

A Pahrump man who feared a neighbor’s dogs might kill his chickens was arrested Tuesday in the shooting death of one dog and the wounding of the other.

David Hollis faces two felony counts of cruelty to animals and two counts of gross misdemeanor discharging a gun where a person might be endangered, according to the Nye County Sheriff’s Department.

A sheriff’s deputy arrived Tuesday night to interview the owner of two dogs who said an unnamed neighbor called to tell them the animals had been shot, the department reported.

The owner found one dog, which had a gunshot wound in its throat, but could not find the second one, deputies said.

The deputy then went to Hollis’ place and “observed a significant amount of blood by the front gate,” according an arrest report.

Hollis’ wife, who was not identified, told the deputy that the dogs “had arrived on her property acting aggressively” and “were attempting to get into her chicken coop” and that she and her husband “were afraid they would get into the enclosure and kill her chickens,” the deputy stated.

The couple, the deputy reported she said, tried and failed to scare the dogs away and then closed their property’s front gates to keep the dogs from leaving until animal control officers could arrive.

She said she learned that animal control was off duty and that the dogs continued to try to access the chicken coop, the deputy reported.

She showed the deputy a video she took of the dogs by the coop, but the deputy did not see the animals attempt to get into the coop nor “observe any vicious behavior from the dogs,” the report stated.

Hollis is suspected of using a .22 caliber rifle to shoot the dogs and kill one, which his wife said they placed into a trash can where an animal control officer later located it, the department stated.

The suspect, the deputy reported, stated that the dogs “approached him acting viciously” prior to the alleged shooting.

Follow his arrest, Hollis’ bail was reported by the sheriff’s department at $20,000, but he was not listed as incarcerated in the county jail in Pahrump as of Thursday, according to jail records.

Contact Jeff Burbank at jburbank@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0382. Follow him @JeffBurbank2 on Twitter.

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