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Officials Think Anger Over Dog Shooting Video Led To Cyber Attacks

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JOHNSON COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) - A North Texas city is under cyber assault tonight. Officials with the City of Cleburne think video of a police officer shooting a dog is the reason employees have had to launch a non-stop effort to keep their computer systems up and running.

The Cleburne information technology department is monitoring systems at city hall around the clock. In less than two weeks there have been more than 120 hours focused solely on fending of cyber attacks and keeping the city's online services functioning.

Resident Amanda Henderson is stunned. "Wow. All I can say is 'wow.'"

Those comments were her reaction after watching video of a Cleburne police officer shooting her six-month-old puppy. "It's just… two wrongs don't make a right," she said.

Since the video's release two weeks ago the City of Cleburne website has come under attack three times. Servers there suffered a second hit on Wednesday.

Mayor Scott Cain believes there's a connection. "The timing of it… we have not had these types of attacks in the past. We've received five attacks in a short period of time."

The Mayor believes hackers are using viruses to try and slow the city's computer systems to the point they shut down. "It's created a pretty big inconvenience for our residents," he said.

Residents have had problems using online services to pay their water bills, apply for permits, and report issues. Despite the problems, city officials say they have secured the private information of residents, so ID theft won't be an issue. They say vital services, like 911 emergency dispatch, has also been maintained.

Henderson says she wants the police officer that killed her dog to admit he made a mistake. She also said she appreciates the support from the public, as long as it's not harming others. "Peaceful things are definitely okay, but not hurtful things."

The FBI has joined the effort to find out who is behind the attacks.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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