Man Who Started Facebook Page About Dog Shooting Finally Meets Pit Bull

Star is doing better!

The man who started the Facebook page, “Star – The New York pit bull shot by police” got to finally meet the inspiration behind his internet dedicated fan page. His dedicated love for a mistreated animal became a real dream come true and life changing cross-country journey.

Charlie Cifarelli, who was originally from New York, but now lives in Nebraska and owns a thriving recycling business had no idea his life would be changed forever by one event over a thousand miles away. Cifarelli was just one of many who watched the video of a pit bull being shot in the head by an NYPD officer which went viral this past summer. The dog, which was protecting her homeless, seizing owner made a large impact with viewers. Viewers who were outraged and sparked a huge amount of feedback for the poor dog, Star.

“I was so horrified by her shooting and when I looked at Star and Lech (Star’s owner at the time) lying on the ground like no one cared. I saw Lech not being checked on even after Star was shot. I saw a man’s dog shot and screaming and even after she was no longer a threat no one checked on her or Lech. I had enough I was going to do something several days later I started the Star page.” Cifarelli stated to The Examiner.

Cifarelli longed to meet the dog he called “our Star girl”, but he stayed connect by keeping in contact with the people in charge of Star during her rehabilitation. Feeding back the information to the public he kept everyone who wanted to listen updated with her progress on the Star fan page.

“Ever since August when she was shot and almost died, I have had a desire to help her and at the very least rally those around me to know her story and support her. Since the moment I saw the video of her being shot I wanted to reach out and hug her and tell her I love her and she has people all over the world who feel as I do.” Cifarelli explained to The Examiner.

Cifarelli detailed to The Examiner his journey to meet the legendary Star:

“This week, I left my home in Nebraska and some 12 hours later I would meet my hero dog “Star.”

“It was surreal I would go through several doors, a long corridor and a steel door along with a gate. The lights were dim I was a guest in this facility which treats animals with care, the way that all animals should live. It was quiet with classical music being played. Instead of dogs that bark you could hear a pin drop. As I entered her large 20 x 20 room a rush of emotions entered me I was finally here I made it to see the dog who I have wrote about, talk about, I was even on the radio in the U.K talking about her.”

“I saw Star!”

“The words came out of me ‘Hey Star Girl it’s me Charlie.’ She sat for me and gave me that look with a wide smile, her trademark look. The lights were turned on for me and I literally hugged her for what seemed like an eternity. I hugged her for me and the whole world and realized how fortunate I was to be able to have this time with her. She has such a smooth coat and she is actually a little shy at first. I talked to her and I hugged her over and over again.”

“I’m quit amazed at how well she has recovered.”

“Her sight seemed good as I played with and her toys she hears noises in the corridor outside her room. I spoke to her doctor a wonderful woman who has compassion and understanding of Stars injuries and her treatment to this point.”

“I can’t over emphasize how much our Star Girl is loved by staff.”

“If anyone had concerns about Stars well-being let me put you at ease I don’t know if there is a place that could do more or care more about Star.”

“Ask me today if I believe in miracles, the answer is yes! Thank you Star.”

As he makes more and more people aware of Star, her story and her love, Cifarelli reveals he himself is a true shining star with a heart of gold.

Written by Renee Rhoades-Harrison.

Below is the video of Star getting shot. Be warned, it’s difficult to watch.


  1. Amanda Howe says

    Disgusting behaviour by the NYPD – I hope the officer concerned I severely disciplined. Too much of act now and repent later, I understand that some pit bulls have been mistreated by a lot of owners and need to be treated with kid gloves so to speak, but you shouldn’t treat every pit bull the same – just remember all animals are the way they are because of the most disgusting living thing on the planet – humans – who think everything on this earth should be forced to conform to what we deem acceptable

  2. jeanne1968 says

    Fucking assholes – Didn’t even attend to the dog or the person who was having a seizure in the first place. Didn’t care. Of course he is going to bark at you – you wouldn’t back up from his owner. There are other ways to deal with this. Then, the dog was flailing about on the street; and you didn’t even care. I am so glad there were people there freaking out.

  3. says

    Where is her original owner…the guy she was trying to protect? It says he was her owner at the time…where is he now? She adored and loved him so much, enough to protect him on that street….Will they be reunited? Fantastic recovery of Star…sickening that the police felt so threatened that was their response. Some cops should just not be allowed to carry a weapon unless they can pass a common sense test, clearly those two could not.

  4. RoxyLemonhart says

    Totally appalled……first for that poor dog…..witnessing her suffering is unbearable…..but second the NYPD are shameful in their conduct. Not to mention USELESS…..milling around, touching their mikes, doing crowd control (I am thankful for the outraged crowd)…putting up crime scene tape (yes, indeed, a crime has occurred, with the NYPD as the culprits). NO ONE checks the dog or her owner???? NO ONE????? For shame NYPD…..FOR SHAME!!!! I cannot watch this again, as that poor baby’s suffering is unbearable to see. I wonder what the outcome was for this cop….any consequences? Or just an afternoon on desk duty. I am sickened and appalled.

    • RoxyLemonhart says

      If a person lunged at the cop in a frantic panic, maybe trying to bite as a warning to back off…..would it be okay if the cop shot the person in the head????

  5. Tammy Roseann Steenburg says

    these fucking cops should be tied to a pole stripped naked then horse whipped till their flesh is litterally peeling and falling from their bones…this poor dog was only protectting it’s sick owner she didnt know any better then to be shot in the head and left laying in her own pool of blood to suffer…these men are the monsters and should be destroyed not the poor dog…the humane thing to have done would have been to put another bullet in the dog if only to stop it’s suffering…and they call pitties the vicious killers!!!! smhs

  6. veronika says

    They should have waited for the animal control, he had the right to shoot but should have thought how to approach/deal with the situation before shooting, or be a man enough and put the dog out of its misery! Either way none of that didn’t have to or shouldn’t happen. :(

  7. Cleo says

    Whenever I see posts about people Cutting down police officers I always want to stick up for them. Police have an incredibly difficult job , They protect the very same people that criticize an insult them. Now having said that, i am a huge animal lover, And animal activist. I am at a complete loss of words after watching this video. My heart has been ripped in half. I just don’t know what to say. The only possible thing I can think of, Is that this specific police officer Had a huge fear of dogs. Just like many people in the world. I am so sorry that this happened. I feel sorry for the owner of the dog, For the dog, And even for the police officer. I am so grateful, That this poor dog has made a recovery.

  8. extremely pissed at cops says

    Hope you die a slow slow horrible death you fucking piece of shit. Maybe by way of a bullet to the face And left to die. All the fucking words I know cannot describe the hatred I have towards you. If I were American I’d now be in jail cause trust me I’d kill you straight up.

  9. says

    I’m not defending these people. Let me say that first off. The NYPD should be ASHAMED of what happened here. But, the dog did rush the officer…and I can understand why he reacted violently to her. What I have such a HUGE problem with here is that NO ONE went for help either for the dog or for the man lying on the ground. What the hell? If you shoot something, at least have the decency to shoot to kill, not to maim, and to torture. He knew the dog wasn’t dead, and DID NOTHING to help her. THAT, makes him a walking peice of filth. THAT is where his humanity died a little bit that day.
    I’m so glad this story has a happy ending…but I also hope that these officers, not only the one who shot her, but all the others who ALSO stood around never stop feeling the guilt and the shame for what they did. God instilled us with a sense of shame for a reason…it was to teach us a lesson. To make sure that we do not continue with heinous acts. And this NEVER needs to happen again. Ever.

  10. Guest says

    Sickning!! What a bunch of assholes! For the first time in my life,I used words that never come out of my mouth while watching this gut wrenching video.What a bunch of cowards.They didn’t have to shoot that dog.She was just protecting her owner,that all could have been handled differently.The dog was wagging her tail.These cops are cowards with guns.Wow.I wonder how they feel when they watch this video.How do they sleep? They must be so proud….what a JOKE! I hope they lost their job,they certainly don’t deserve to still have a job as a cop.I saw no “Protecting or Serving” going on.They didn’t even check on the man that had the seizure or the dog after they shot her.How dare they let this poor girl flail around crying in the street??? Karma…..These cops make me sick!!!!! Assholes.

  11. says

    OMFG….what a fuckin asshole peice of shit cop, i am an owner of a pit & she is the kindest the most gentle of all 3 of my dogs, all she was doing was protecting her owner, all cops r the same u give them a gun and a badge & they go on a major power trip, i’m soo thankful that star survived & is doing fine, many thanx to the kind ppl who r taking care of her

    • karen says

      That was the most disgusting appalling act of inhumane behavior ive seen by anyone no less a cop…he was scared of the dog,ok for one moment let’s go with that lame excuse..he shoots a dog,watches him suffer and cry without calling for help..all those cops stood let’s get to poor guy seizuring on the street the dogs owner…Wtf is wrong with those excuse for the complete lack of compassion for human and dog…Sickining..

  12. Flash says

    This is sickening…Several cops just wandering around posing, doing nothing. Surely they have a duty of care to the male who is laid out, and disgusting to shoot a dog like that. In the UK, us cops would be tending to the man and the whole area would have been contained to protect the public. The dog would have been dealt with differently, and only shot if an extreme immediate threat to someone.

  13. says

    Every one of these cops should be fired. They were not doing their job at all. Just standing around trying to look cool and macho. Shame on NYPD! If these morons are any example of the rest of the NYPD New York is in serious trouble. Not only do they NOT attend to the person in need (which of course most people would consider priority number 1) they shoot a dog for defending it’s fallen owner (is that not why we have dogs???) then the leave the dog to suffer (umm isn’t that animal abuse). Why was animal control not called? Why are these big tough cops afraid of a dog. Even IF it did attack, which I doubt it would have, there are several cops on the scene. I am sure between all of them they could have subdues the dog without shooting it. Cops these days are gun happy and jumpy. I think jumpy wimps should not be allowed to carry guns. I mean really… if you are scared of a little dog how do you handle really scary things … like other people with guns. I think that is way more dangerous than a little dog. Oh, hang on it’s MURDER to shoot people. As it should be with innocent dogs. NYPD = MURDERERS.

  14. margaret says

    i think the police where wrong for what why did and they have no heart i dont think they should have done that it was not called for they are gun happy thats all the police are good for

  15. Mary Kay says

    Thank you from the dog owners of the world and from the bottom of my heart as the owner if a pittie mix. He is the sweetest, most loving dog I have ever had. It truly hurts me to know that they are so misunderstood.

  16. says

    i have watched alot of this shit over the internet and its all the same the animal does not deserve being treated like this because cops are to gun happy and in the situation the dog was in she was protecting her owner good girl you fucking cops need to be trained not the animals they seam to have the right idea but as i could see you cops were not doing your job you made idiots of yourselfs and dident even do the job you was sent on get that one the man was lying on the street and you shoot his dog for protecting him shame on you get a life maybe one your better at cause being a cop just isent it

  17. says

    I couldn’t watch the whole video. It was heart breaking. I probly would’ve been arrested if I was there. Glad this sweet girl is doing well. I hope the NYPD scum that shot her and did nothing to help her or her owner, who she was only protecting, are living life at its worst. Some people shouldn’t be allowed to carry guns. Next time call animal control you morons.

  18. says

    once a pitbull bites it won’t let you all see the dog is guarding the man on the ground. do you really think the cop was gonna try a different tactic? Cruelty to animals is horrible and most american police are complete numpty’s but in this case it is classified as self defence. so all of you who are saying the cops should die are just one sided thinkers with no brain.Otherwise you would’ve shot the dog in your defence as well.

  19. Lindz says

    Fear of dogs or not.. this dog charged at not only the officer, but people walking by. Were they just supposed to get bit? Thank God that dog lived.. but you have to keep in mind that the officers also have to protect themselves. It’s a very sad video all around, and I think the biggest lesson to be learned is that if you’re homeless, find someone to properly care for your pets so something like this doesn’t happen. Everyone is so quick to peg the cops as bad guys, but if that officer didn’t shoot the dog and the dog wound up biting him this would be a COMPLETELY different story.

  20. Jojo says

    It is good to read about the recovery of the dog! This video made me cry so bad… Such stupid cruelty from the police! Since they didn´t seem to care about the owner or his dog, they could have waited and called animal control, but hell no, why bother? It´s just an animal, a stupid dog protecting his master, so they choose the easy way…. Heartbreaking video, but thank god for the full recovery of Star!

  21. Artgirl1 says

    This is the most disgusting thing I’ve ever seen! Supposedly NYC’s “Finest” at their very Worst! These Cops had NO Idea how to help that man OR.Star, so they shot Star (out of fear I guess) and left them both in the street in agony & like trash! They are sorely in need of training. Star was protecting her owner & reading THEIR body language. That’s what she understands! Had they actually tried to help this man and handled this differently, I don’t think that Star would have reacted the way that she did. The Officers wasted SO much time standing around while Star & her owner were both in the street, surely they had enough time to call Animal Control before they shot her if they were afraid of Star. I think that was clearly the case. Fear isn’t an excuse to shoot an animal! I hope their conscience bothers them-if they even have one. One way or another, Karma will haunt them for sure. Glad that Star’s recovering well. Does anyone know how her owner is doing? I know that Star’s up for adoption now.

  22. says

    hindsight is always 2020… the dog appeared to be attacking, and the officer did not act in extremis as he percieved an attack on his partner. This is why we have LEASH LAWS. and the dog should have been on a leash or tether and this would not have happened. All the people milling around and yelling creating the appearance of an imminent possible threat delayed any aid to either the person or the dog. true a tranc or a taser would have been preferable, but those calls are easy to make after the fact…

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