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Posted: Thursday, July 13, 2017 12:43 PM

Updated: Thursday, July 13, 2017 12:43 PM

Confrontation Turns Into Shouting Match Over Dogs Being Left In Car Near South Knox Grocery Store

An argument turned into a shouting match Wednesday after a man was accused of leaving his dogs inside his truck while he went shopping.

A man named Alan Lewis got out his phone and started recording his confrontation with a man named Tom, who Lewis accused of leaving his dogs in the truck while he shopped inside a South Knox Food City.

In the video you hear both men shouting: "My dogs are happy," screamed Tom. "They are hot," shouted Lewis.

The two argued for several minutes before Tom said he left the area because he felt threatened.

"He started screaming and cussing and carrying on, so at that point I said, 'Look, get out of here,'" said Tom.

Tom admits he left his dogs inside the truck, but he said he left the windows down. He said he was gone for less than 10 minutes. Tom said the confrontation got heated; however, he regrets it now, and said he will no longer leave his dogs inside the truck.

"I've learned that you're not supposed to leave an animal in the car, even if the windows are down. I did not know that, I'm old school, but I know it now. Yes, I've got some changing to do, and I will do it. I'll do the right thing by my dogs because I love them. MJ is 15 years old, he didn't get there by not loving him," said Tom.

The Knoxville Fire Department said no one should leave their pets in the car.

"If you're truly a pet lover, you're not going to leave your pet in a car that's 80 degrees plus. Cars get really hot within five or 10 minutes. It's over 100 degrees inside, and you wouldn't want to put your pet in that situation," said Knoxville Fire Department Captain DJ Corcoran.

Tom said he regrets the outburst and will no longer leave his dogs in the truck.

"That's not what I am. I don't want to yell at people and cuss, that's not what I am. Maybe I did need correction in his eyes, but he went about it the wrong way," said Tom.

In Tennessee, If someone sees a child or dog trapped in a hot car, a person can break into the vehicle.

That person will be protected from civil liability for any damage, but only if the situation meets a few guidelines.

Those are:

- The vehicle must be locked. There must be no other reasonable method for the animal or child to get out of the car.

- The person who breaks into the car must have a reasonable and good faith belief the animal or child is in imminent danger of suffering harm if not immediately removed.

- The person must also contact law enforcement, the fire department or 911 before breaking into the vehicle.

- After breaking into the car, the person must leave a note on the windshield with his or her contact information, reason entry was made, location of child or animal, and the fact that authorities were notified.

- The person must stay with the child or animal until law enforcement, firefighters or other emergency first responders arrive. That person and the child or animal must stay in a safe spot out of the elements, but reasonably close to the car.











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