Southeast Missouri deputy quits after killing pet Chihuahua

MARBLE HILL, Mo. (AP) - A southeast Missouri sheriff's deputy is out of a job after using deadly force against a suspect's dog. And the sheriff says he was "just sick" to learn the victim wasn't some large hulking breed - but a Chihuahua.

Bollinger (BUL'-ihn-gur) County Deputy Kelly Barks resigned in March, several weeks after the incident that occurred during a domestic violence call.

Sheriff Leo McElrath told KFVS-TV the deputy arrested a man at the scene and got permission to search his home. Inside, the sheriff says, Barks confronted three growling dogs.

Barks believed the Chihuahua had bitten her and shot it once, then shot it again because it still appeared aggressive. When the dog went into its kennel, she fired the third and fatal shot.

The sheriff says he's apologized to the Chihuahua's owner.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)