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Man Says Cop Scaled Guarded Area, Killed Dog

(CN) - A Columbus, Ohio, police officer killed a $35,000 guard dog named Cypress von Bildsten while trespassing on private property, a federal complaint alleges.

Mark Bildsten filed the complaint Tuesday against Columbus, its police division, Chief Kim Jacobs and the as-yet identified officers he says shot and killed his German shepherd on June 27, 2012.

Bildsten says he had been the one to summon the police after receiving a call from a neighbor who spotted two men harassing his dogs outside his business, named online as Bildsten Landscape Services Inc.

"During the conversation with police dispatch, plaintiff advised that guard dogs were present on the property and that he was en route to the location," the complaint states.

Bildsten says the entire property is visible through a chain-link fence with a locked gate, and that there was "no ongoing emergency or unauthorized persons on the premises" by the time the police arrived.

Because one of these officers decided to climb into the enclosure, Cypress, a dog Bildsten registered with the American Kennel Club in June 2008 when he bought it fully trained for $35,000, bit him, according to the complaint.

Bildsten says the officer then shot and killed his dog, as the other officers looked on.

In addition to the more than 1,000 hours of training Cypress von Bildsten received, the plaintiff points to incidental costs incurred related to its "medical expenses, licensure, food and boarding."

Cypress' companionship, as well as his guard work, also cannot be overlooked, the Bildsten says.

Bildsten seeks punitive damages deprivation of property without due process, failure to train and failure to intervene. He is represented by Samuel Shamansky.

A spokesman for the Columbus police has not returned a request for comment. Bildsten declined to give an interview.

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