3 dogs die after being shot in St. Paul

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Three dogs have died after being shot Tuesday night in St. Paul.

According to a St. Paul Police Department spokesperson, officers responded to multiple reports of shots fired around 10 p.m. near Milton Street and Charles Avenue. One of the callers said she heard a dog barking, several gunshots and then a yelp.

When officers arrived, a group of people flagged them down in front of a house on the 900 block of Charles Avenue, police said. They found a trail of blood leading to the house's front porch, where a rottweiler named Charlotte was "bleeding profusely."

According to the police report, Charlotte was shot in the head, chest and front leg.

Other officers responding to the same call followed another trail of blood that led to an alleyway where they found another rottweiler, Kingston, who was shot in the leg.

A third dog, a great Dane younger than a year old named Sky, was found deceased in the front yard.

Wednesday afternoon, the dogs' owner told KSTP that Charlotte and Kingston were both put down at a veterinarian's office due to the grave injuries they suffered.

Whitney Philippi wiped away tears when talking about the family dogs that died after being shot.

"It just sucks. I've been here for 17 years and never would I have imagined that something like this happening to any of my dogs that I've had," she said. "It doesn't make sense."

Philippi feels someone let their dogs out from the fenced-in yard Tuesday night before 10 p.m.

Police said the dogs' owner told officers he had let the dogs out of the house and into a fenced-in backyard. He said one of the gates may have been open and the dogs might have escaped.

A possible witness said the dogs may have been walking in the street when the shots were fired, police said.

St. Paul Police spokesperson Steve Linders said officers are trying to piece together what played out that led up to the dogs being shot in the neighborhood. Their investigation includes looking at how the gate opened.

"We don't see a lot of it in St. Paul. Usually, when someone's dogs are out for whatever reason, a neighbor will call and say, 'hey, your dogs are out,' or better yet pick up the dogs and bring them home to have something like this, it's just terrible," he said. 

No suspects are in custody. The case is under investigation.

If anyone knows any information regarding this incident, they are asked to call the St. Paul Police Department to provide any tips or information at 651-291-1111.

A GoFundMe page has been set up by the family.