Identity Withheld for Gun-Pulling City Officer

The Baltimore City police officer's identity has not been released by the Harford County Sheriff's Office.

The identity of a Baltimore City police officer who is being withheld by the .

Patch filed a Public Information Act request for the officer’s identity, but was denied on grounds that the request was “an unwarranted invasion of privacy” and revealing the information could “endanger the life or physical safety of an individual.”

The officer, whose name is blacked out in the sheriff's incident report, is listed as the victim on the police report. But no charges were filed against the woman whose dog approached the officer’s family. A .

Police initially said the officer did not pull his gun and that a report was not written. After inquiries from Patch, though, police released a written report that stated the man did pull his gun. A spokeswoman for the sheriff's office said that both parties involved in the incident left the playground “cordially.”

Lisa Vecchioni, the woman who had the dog and is listed as a "suspect" on the report, said that was not the case. Her name was also blacked out, but she contacted Patch to complain about the incident.

“He pulled the gun out immediately, didn’t even give a chance to see if the dog was friendly or not,” Vecchioni told Patch on March 25. “He had a gun pointed at my dog, I had to cross between my dog and him with the gun pointed at my dog. … It was definitely pointed at me.”

The dog is listed as an 80-pound “pitbull mix” on the police report, but Vecchioni said it weighs about 40 pounds and is primarily a Labrador mix.

Mark May 13, 2011 at 09:02 PM
Am I barking up the wrong tree here? So an officer carries a weapon on a playground, (darn four and five year olds, you never know when they will be packing heat) and officials don’t want to release his name for fear of his safety. COME ON…. I don’t think anyone is at a point that they want to hurt this officer, or retaliate. If he feels his actions were just, then what’s the big deal? Let us hear his side of the story. Mrs. Vecchioni’s name has been out since the beginning. I don’t think those who disagree with her are out for retaliation (maybe you should keep that vicious looking dog by your side Mrs. Vecchioni). I guess it’s easier to stand behind a gun then your conviction. I truly mean no disrespect for this officer. If I was walking some of the streets in Baltimore, I would want him by my side, and I’d thank him sincerely, but when you make some decisions you should be accountable, or at least give your side of the story.
jj May 14, 2011 at 03:42 PM
i have two children and they both grew up around full bred pits and never was there an incident, people give pits a bad name because some train them to fight and of course a dog trained to fight will be aggressive but so are boxers and chiuauas, it is crazy to think a grown man would pull a gun on a childs playground but i guess he felt like his life was in danger right????
Jessica May 14, 2011 at 05:43 PM
I don't care what kind of dog it was, pit bull or not, any dog that is 80 pounds and not on a leash and came up to my 5 year old I would be happy for any officer to pull his gun out! There are dog parks for a reason. You have no idea what an animal is going to do in any situation. I think the officer did the right thing in the situation and it shouldn't be a problem for him to want his identity withheld. He has a family he wants to protect. His job is dangerous enough.
Mark May 14, 2011 at 06:48 PM
Jessica you are 100% correct and I neglected to mention it in my previous comment. Dogs do not belong on playgrounds with little children running around. Leashed or unleashed. They can be very tempermental. Both parties are at fault. I guess my main point was that fact that you and officials feel the officer and family may be in danger from retaliation. Once again, I don't think this incident caused enough anger for retaliation or a family relocation program. Let's hear the officer's side of the story from him and not a second party.
Robert Armstrong May 15, 2011 at 05:07 AM
Smells like a cover up.
Dianne May 18, 2011 at 02:38 PM
The breed standard for American Pit Bull Terriers and Staffordshire terriers puts their weight at 30 to 60 lbs. The stated weight of forty pounds meets that criteria. Any dog weighing 80 lbs is more likely Presa Canero or something other than an APBT.
Acts Like Summer February 15, 2012 at 12:19 PM
This really isn't that important, but my parents have a dog that looks EXACTLY like the dog pictured, and he weighs about 45 lbs. We always assumed that he was a pit/lab mix. We recently did a DNA test on him and found out he was half bulldog/sealyham terrier mix and half german short-haired pointer. Neither my dog or this dog look like a true pit. Now onto the real issue, I have to disagree that dogs do not belong on playgrounds near children. A responsible owner will have control over their dog, leashed or unleashed. Yes, there are plenty of irresponsible owners out there, but that shouldn't take away from the privileges of the responsible owners. But why would anyone take their children to a park if they feel they needed a gun on them while they are there? My father was a city cop and he never carried his gun outside of the city. And there have been instances where I have been to parks/neighborhoods where I know there are unsafe dogs. I protect myself with mace or a taser, because I wouldn't want to kill an animal, just protect myself. This cop could have easily brought either with him to use to defend his family and we would have much less of an issue here.
Acts Like Summer February 15, 2012 at 12:26 PM
yeah, for some reason a gun is safer than a dog?? Let's see which one has really killed more children. I can't stand the bad rap pits get, like you said, any dog can be agressive if trained to do so or if never properly socialized.


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