Man sought for assaulting police dog, other chargesA 21-year-old man accused of punching and biting the Superior Police Department’s K-9, Blek, is being sought by authorities.
A 21-year-old man accused of punching and biting the Superior Police Department’s K-9, Blek, is being sought by authorities.
An arrest warrant was issued for Brandon DeMario Shaw on Wednesday in Douglas County Circuit Court. He faces felony counts of operating a motor vehicle without owner’s consent and harassment of police and fire animals causing injury and one misdemeanor count of obstructing an officer.
According to the complaint:
In the early morning hours of July 26, Superior Police Officer Todd Maas noticed and followed a vehicle that had been reported stolen from Duluth. The vehicle, which ran out of gas, stopped in the alley behind the 2100 block of Tower Avenue.
When the driver, later identified as Shaw, exited the vehicle, Maas ordered him to get on the ground or he could get bit by Blek.
Shaw jumped a four-foot fence and attempted to flee on foot. He lost his footing and went to his knees. As Blek was about to apprehend him, Shaw punched the dog’s left ear, then grappled both the dog’s ears, raised the Blek’s head and appeared to bite the dog on the head.
He also struck the dog on the muzzle before running away. Blek located Shaw again and the 21-year-old fled across Tower Avenue, leaving a shoe behind in the road, and jumped a six-and-a-half foot fence. At the time, Maas observed that Blek appeared injured and requested that a Duluth K-9 respond. A veterinarian from Superior Animal Hospital said it was likely the dog was bruised and sore from the assault.
Superior Deputy Chief Nicholas Alexander said Blek, who joined the department in 2006, is improving and recovering from the injuries sustained in the incident.
“Assaultive behavior such as this can obviously result in increased risks of injury for … the person being detained, handler and the dog,” Alexander said.
Injuring a police dog is a class I felony, the same level as the stolen vehicle charge. Both are punishable by up to three years and six months in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.