The shooting started after Cochran's roommate called the police, after a friend the roommate had over refused to leave. "My roommate had been seeing someone, and they had gotten into an argument," Cochran told al.com. "My roommate was getting ready to go to work at 6 a.m. Apparently his friend didn't want to leave yet because it was so early."
When the officers knocked, Bella did what any curious dog might do. She slipped out of Cochran's room and went to see who was at the door.
"My roommate let them (the police) in, and they were standing on the threshold or right inside the door, and Bella went up to them," Cochran said. "I'm sure she was wagging her tail, because she was the friendliest dog in the world. And she never, never growled. She didn't bark, that's for sure."
" I went insane. Bella was running all over the house. There was blood everywhere. My car is still soaked in it.”One of the two officers shot into the house, Cochran said, hitting Bella in the head and the chest.
"My roommate was right there next to them, and they could have shot him."
Cochran said he didn't see the actual shooting, as he was still in his bedroom. "The gunshots and my roommate screaming 'No,' made me realize what had happened. I could not believe it."
"The cops were in the doorway. They could have just shut the door. I went insane. Bella was running all over the house. There was blood everywhere. My car is still soaked in it."
"They had to euthanize her."Birmingham Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Johnny Williams said he could not speak to the specifics the shooting because it is currently under investigation by the Internal Affairs Department.
"I can't comment on it because it is an internal affairs investigation."
Asked about any training the BPD receives as far as dog and police interactions. Williams said the BPD training "trains us to interact with any kind of threat we encounter."
"In some cases, it would be the officer's discretion as to how they would deal with a specific problem," Williams said.
As for Cochran, he said he's been taking the loss of Bella very hard. He called the grief and loss hotline at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to speak to a counselor, he said. He also reached out to Cosmo's Pizza owner Leisa Bunn on Sunday night. Birmingham Police opened fire on three dogs belonging to Bunn and her boyfriend, Rusty Crawford, in 2009, while responding to a call about stray dogs.
"It's just been ripping me apart ever since then," Cochran said.