Authorities: 10 Dogs Shot To Death, Numerous Puppies and Canines Abused at Local Police Officer’s Private Business [UPDATED]

The general manager and other workers at a Naugatuck-based canine training business owned by a New Canaan Police officer shot and killed least 10 dogs there, officials say. Placed on leave last week after police in his hometown of Stratford brought an initial set of charges that included felony charges of illegal use and possession of explosives, Officer David Rivera, 34, on Monday turned himself in to Naugatuck Police on a warrant for conspiracy to commit cruelty to animals, first-degree reckless endangerment and conspiracy to commit euthanization of a canine. 

Alerted last week by state and other authorities about possible animal cruelty at Black Rock Canine Training—a facility for prospective military and police dogs, as well as for privately owned canines by individuals seeking such training— Naugatuck detectives and Animal Control officers found “that numerous canines of all ages and breeds, including German Shepherds, Belgian Malinois, and Labrador Retrievers, have been abused and injured during their time at Black Rock Canines,” according to a press release issued by Naugatuck PD. “More specifically, that at least 10 canines have been killed by employees with a firearm,” the press release said. “The canines that were shot and killed were then buried on the property by the owner/operators of the business.”

Its general manager, 33-year-old Daniel Luna of Waterbury, “had abused numerous puppies and dogs during his time of employment at Black Rock Canines facility,” the press release said. Lunda’s abuse included “the shooting of dogs which were deemed no longer viable for the business,” it said.