BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Viral videos appearing to show a woman on an electric scooter dragging a dog on a Bakersfield street over the weekend have sparked outrage after being posted to social media, and the incident is now the subject of a police investigation.
Bakersfield television station KERO was first made aware of pictures showing a person holding a bloody dog over the weekend.
A viewer contacted KERO on Monday with surveillance video that shows the person traveling in the area of downtown Bakersfield with a dog being dragged behind.
Brandon Sanders told the station he was with his girlfriend on Sunday afternoon when they witnessed the incident, believing at first the dog was a stuffed animal because the canine was motionless. They yelled at the rider to stop, but she was wearing headphones and it's unclear if she heard them.
Sanders confronted the woman when she got closer and asked if she and the dog were OK.
She responded, 'S--t happens, just like it does with kids," Sanders said in a widely shared post on Facebook.
"We told her, 'No you don't drag your kids behind a scooter at 15 miles-per-hour,'" Sanders wrote on Facebook.
The dog had four bloody paws, Sanders said. He snapped photos of the wounded canine and posted them on social media.
"I was on my bicycle and she was walking and when she looked at me and saw that I was taking a picture of her she smiled at me, kind of a smart-alec smile. I'm not going to say what she did was intentional, but it was very negligent," Sanders told the station. "She had drug the dog at least 100 yards before she checked that it was there and that’s just from what we saw, from the point when we saw her to when she stopped."
Another witness, James Dowell, recorded videos of the incident and posted them to Facebook on Monday morning. The post was shared nearly 2,000 times in less than a day and elicited outrage from numerous users.
(The disturbing videos are apparently no longer embeddable, but can be viewed here.)
Police in Bakersfield are investigating the incident. Bird released the following statement to KERO:
“We find the video to be deeply disturbing and are appreciative of the community for bringing it to our attention. This type of rider behavior is wrong and prohibited by Bird. As soon as we were made aware of the video, we began our own investigation of the incident and have suspended the account for the individual involved in the incident."
No arrests have been made in the case, police said.
Meanwhile, Sanders posted on Facebook that animal services picked up the dog. The canine was medically treated and expected to make a full recovery.