ATLANTA -- They say all dogs go to heaven. That will be especially true for one German Shepherd in the West End.
Not so sure, though, about the man who killed the dog while firing multiple gunshots into a Chevy Suburban that was loaded with children.
Witnesses say the shooting began with road rage and ended up with the gunman following the SUV to a strip mall on Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard.
"About five minutes later, they pulled back through," said one of the victims, who asked not to be identified. "They just rolled right up; they pulled a gun out and started (shooting)."
There were at least three children in the vehicle, along with their mother. Bullets flew through the windows, leaving shattered glass inside the SUV and on the ground.
"They hit the back of his car (with bullets)," said the victim, who was uninjured. "The dog, I guess, jumped in front of the bullet to save one of the children and the wife."
The dog could be seen in surveillance video trotting past one of the nearby shops after the shooting occurred.
"The dog took the bullet for the kids so the kids would be safe," said one of the people who saw the scene play out.
Meanwhile, the dog had been mortally wounded in the gunfire. He ran behind a building at the scene and later died.
"They were fired upon and their family was terrorized," said Atlanta Police Sgt.Gregory Lyon. "They survived that only to find that their pet is now gone. It's sad for the whole family, especially the day after Thanksgiving."