VIDEO: Illinois Officer Fired for Shooting Little Girl's Dog

A police officer in Hometown, Ill., has been fired days after fatally shooting a dog in front of a 6-year-old girl.

The dog's owners said their 1-year-old German Shepherd mix, named Apollo, had run out the front door of their house around 2:20 p.m. Friday and had returned to the front lawn when police arrived.

"I walked over and I tried to call him inside. The police officer had his gun out already," Nicole Echlin, one of the dog's owners told the Chicago Tribune over the weekend. Her 6-year-old daughter walked with her.

"He started showing his teeth — that's when the officer shot him," said Echlin, 27. "I didn't know that was going to happen."

Echlin said she grabbed the girl and rushed inside the home. "That's going to be in her head probably forever," Echlin said.

"Although the officer may have been justified under the Illinois Use of Force statute governing deadly force, I have made the decision to terminate that officer's employment with the Hometown Police Department," Chief Charles Forsyth said.