Three Prince George's County policemen - who were called by a Seat Pleasant family to resolve a domestic squabble - never suspected they would have to brawl with the father, the mother, the son, or have to shoot the family's pet dog named Hitler.
That is what happened Thursday night, however, Prince George's County police said yesterday.
The episode began when 58-year-old Charles W. Thomas Sr., of 7212 Hylton St., asked county police Thursday night to arrest his son.
Thomas told police that he had been fighting with his son and now wanted him arrested on an outstanding assault and battery warrant that Thomas himself had had previously issued against his son, police said.
Police said they checked their records and in fact there was an outstanding warrant against Charles W. Thomas Jr. Police said they would arrest Thomas Jr. so Thomas Sr. went back home.
Later that evening, when police arrived at the door, police said they were greeted by 27-year-old Thomas Jr. in his undershorts. His mother said he had just taken a shower, police said.
At this point, the accounts by police and the family differ. Police say they were standing in the living room of the home telling the son to go upstairs and put on clothes so he could be taken to the police station. That is when police say the son "shoved" one of the officers.
Police say they were then told by the parents that they no longer wanted their son arrested, but officers told them they had an outstanding warrant against the son. When officers attempted to arrest the son, police said a fight erupted as the parents tried to prevent the arrest.
Police said one of the officers managed to radio for help during the brawl. When the third officer came to the door and began charging down the hallway of the home, police said the mother opened the patio door to let in the family's two pet German shepherds and a huskie.
Police said one of the officers managed to close the door barring two of the three dogs from entering the living room, but the 100-pound German shepherd, named Hitler, was charging the officer who entered the hallway.
Police said the backup officer drew his gun and fired, killing the dog about two feet in front of him.The three Thomases were taken to the Seat Pleasant station and charged, police said.
Both Charles W. Thomas Sr. and his 58-year-old wife, Mae Elizabeth Thomas, were charged with assault, hindering an arrest, and resisting arrest, police said. Their son, Charles Thomas Jr., was charged with resisting arrest and with the original assault and battery charge on the outstanding warrant, police said. All of the Thomases were released yesterday, police said.
The Thomases' version of what happened is different from the police account.
Mrs. Thomas said police tried to take Thomas Jr. out of the house without letting him put on a pair of pants. When she objected, she said a police officer "pushed me."
Mrs. Thomas said she objected again and the officer "shoved me to the ground and put his knee on my chest." That is when Thomas Sr. objected, according to the mother who said her husband "defended me."
Mrs. Thomas said she plans to file a formal brutality complaint against the policemen.