Firefighter Who Kills Dogs Is Fired

Columbus Public Safety Director Mitchell Brown upheld the fire chief’s recommendation to terminate the firefighter who admitted to shooting his dogs.

43-year-old David Santuomo’s termination is effective immediately. Santuomo pleaded guilty to animal cruelty charges last month. He said he killed his two dogs, Sloopy and Skeeter, in December because he did not want to pay to board them while he went on a cruise.

Santuomo shot the dogs multiple times in his basement then dumped their carcasses in a fire station dumpster. Co-workers alerted the humane society.

Santuomo told Fire Chief Ned Pettus he feared the dogs had ingested a toxin, and he shot them to put them out of their misery. A necropsy proved otherwise.

After an internal investigation Fire Chief Pettus recommended Santuomo be fired. Santuomo had served with the Division of Fire for 12 years. He has ten days to appeal his termination.

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