SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - The Spokane County Sheriff's Office is addressing concerns as to why one of its deputies shot and killed a dog Monday during a foot pursuit.
Sheriff K9 Laslo was attacked by a dog and had to get stitches as a result of that attack.
Deputies were responding to a domestic dispute at a Spokane Valley home. Authorities say an individual would not cooperate and led Deputy Jeff Thurman and his K9 partner Laslo on a foot pursuit.
During the pursuit a pit bull tied up to a fence nearby got loose and attacked Laslo.
"I heard 'Control your dog, control your dog' and then pop, pop pop," witness Carl Berens said.
Berens lives across the street and said he saw the entire incident.
"Just the cops show up and the guy going over the fence and the guy is running and the guy came back and got a K9 and went around the corner and he yelled stop or I'm going to release the K9," Berens said.
"Right about that same time frame a large pit bull that was in the back that had been tied to the fence broke loose somehow from it's chain and attacked Laslo's rear leg," Sheriff's Deputy Craig Chamberlin said.
Thurman, according to the sheriff's office, did everything he could but ultimately had to put the pit bull down. He fired two shots at the pit bull to save his partner Laslo.
"It's not just a pet, this is his partner for the community, to protect the community, to locate the criminal element when they're committing crimes," Chamberlin explained.
Laslo had to get six stitches in his leg after the incident.
The dog's owner, a friend visiting the victim of the initial domestic violence call is in mourning. That person declined an interview, save to say that she is devastated from what happened Monday.
Laslo, who has been working with Thurman for a year, is expected to make a full recovery.
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