Officers on leave during investigation into death of groundhog run over by golf cart

RENSSELAER, N.Y. (WTEN) – Rensselaer’s police chief is still trying to figure if any of his officers were involved in the intentional killing a groundhog at Frear Park Golf course in Troy last week.

Police Chief Rick Fusco confirmed that Officer Tyler Sammon and Officer Matt Spath has been placed on paid administrative leave, pending the outcome of the investigation.

Law enforcement sources say that Sammon was driving the golf cart and Spath was his passenger. Witnesses told golf course staff they saw two men on a golf cart deliberately chase down a groundhog until it couldn’t run. The two men then allegedly ran it over with the cart.

The Rensselaer Police Department Union held its annual golf tournament last Friday afternoon.

Chief Fusco says if he finds that the officers did intentionally kill the groundhog, he will recommend them to be fired from the department.

“It’s a difficult situation right now because you know I’m ashamed. I’m ashamed because people think that this happened and it may have, but it may not have,” Chief Fusco said. “I’m ashamed as the chief of police to have people think that somebody from this department did something like that and they may have.”

The Troy Police Department is also investigating this alleged incident.

No one has been charged in this case and it’s an ongoing investigation.

NEWS10 ABC’s Lindsay Nielsen tried to contact both officers to get their side of what happened, but they were not able to be reached.

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