WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Within seconds a friendly visit to a front door by police turned violent.
Capitol Heights Police say one of their officers was forced to shoot a dog that came running from a house straight at a cop. The dog survived and now all those involved are telling their side of the story.
Last night was National Night Out, when local police came out into the community to educate the public about what they do. Officers were going door to door handing out leaflets, and that's when things turned ugly.
Nine-month-old "Cash" seems to be back to his old self, according to his owners less than a day after he was shot by police.
Cash's owner Reggie Matthews says, "I was enraged."
Matthews says when he answered the door to take a police leaflet Cash managed to get out the door and run about 30 yards down towards a group of volunteers and officers who had just left his porch. The officer feeling threatened reached for his gun and shot the dog.
The owner then rushed the dog to the nearest animal hospital for emergency surgery. That's when the veterinarian pulled the bullet out of the dog's shoulder. The single bullet shot had lodged in his right chest cavity.
Capitol Heights Police Chief Anthony Ayers says the Officer, a one-year-veteran of the force didn't have another option. He took WUSA9 to the site of the shooting to offer a further explanation of how the officer says it all happened.
"He took the action and the dog was right here in front of him ...he took an accurate shot from real close," said Ayers.
Ayers is standing by his officer saying:
"My officers were heroic, because they put themselves between the charging dog and the volunteers who were mostly children that were helping pass out crime prevention literature to the community."
In the end this first time dog owner is just happy "Cash" is still alive and doing well but his frustration at what happened still exists.
"For you to sit there and shoot to kill my dog... I have a problem with Capitol Heights Police."
The shooting is still under investigation.