In a 2016 story that has resurfaced on social media and since gone viral, a 23yr old black man in Canton Ohio, Kelontre Barefield was sentenced to 35-45yrs in prison for the killing of a K-9 Police Dog. The Dog named Jethro attacked Barfield while he was in the commission of an armed robbery, Barfield fired on the beast killing it. At his sentencing Barfield received 45yrs in prison for the death of Jethro and other charges related to multiple armed robberies. The immediate reactions on Facebook were fast and furious as the court system was blasted for placing more value on the life of a dog than on that of many black men who were murdered offer the past few years and saw NO justice.
Leviticus 24:17 And he that killeth any man shall surely be put to death. 18 And he that killeth a beast shall make it good; beast for beast.
The Holy Bible does not condone the killing of this beast but the scriptures DO clearly make a difference between the loss of life of a person and a beast. The laws of God state that the life of a man cannot be replaced but that a beast can be restored and made good, (Beast for Beast). This is hard to understand in a society that elevates beasts, especially dogs over the lives of other human beings. It is a known fact that many dogs live in better conditions and eat better and more frequently than many of the poor of our society. But despite the great value placed on “Man’s Best Friend”, the scriptures tell us that at the end of the day your dog is still a replaceable beast!
Romans 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: 4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
In an effort to approach this article with clarity and equity it should be noted that the lengthy sentence Kelontre Barefield received was not due solely to the death of the K-9 Police Dog, but also due in large part to the various crimes he committed leading up to his eventual capture. The scripture above tells us that we must be subject to the rulers, judges and authority of this land and that the breaking of the laws will carry with it stiff consequences. This is all the more reason why it is important for our people to turn from lives filled with crime and violence and repent in the name of Jesus Christ to obtain mercy and salvation in time to come.
In a final note, the state of Ohio moved to pass a law calling for stiffer penalties and longer sentences for people who kill Police dogs. It was called Jethro’s Bill!