Dog shot by police after biting officer found by owners

Composite image. Background photo by barbol88/iStock/Getty Images Plus. Dog photo from St. George Police Department Facebook post, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The owners of a dog shot by a St. George Police officer after it attacked him Tuesday morning have located the animal, still bleeding from its gunshot wounds.

The incident occurred just after 3 a.m. Tuesday during a second disturbance call to a dispute on the 1100 North block of 1100 West in St. George, St. George Police officer Tiffany Atkin said.

The dog was chained in the front yard and barking when officers arrived. One of the dog’s owners asked to bring the dog inside the house, and officers said they could do so, according to a SGPD Facebook post.

Moments after the dog was brought into the residence, it escaped through an open window on the back side of the house. The dog appeared in the front yard without warning and lunged at the officer, who backed away to get away from the animal.

The officer just didn’t really have a lot of time to react,” Atkin told St. George News.

His attempts to escape the animal were unsuccessful and the dog bit him, latching onto his left forearm, according to the post. The officer drew his weapon and fired at the dog, who was hit by an unknown number of bullets. After being hit, the dog released its grip on the officer and ran away.

The black pit bull mix was not located until around noon Tuesday, a family member told St. George News. He found his own way back home; no one saw him enter the house. The owner said it seemed like at least three or four shots had been fired at the dog.

“He was going up to an officer as he was backing up from him and he jumped and bit his arm,” the family member said. “He just got scraped, but as soon as that happened they shot him three times, four times.”

The extent of the animal’s injuries are unclear. The owners took the dog to a veterinarian shortly after locating him.

“They’re going to check him out, see if the bullets did any damage because he was moving around, hiding you know,” the family member said. “He was still dripping blood when we found him.”

Atkin said both adults at the residence were outside speaking to officers at the time of the incident.

The family member also reported hearing the shots and came running outside just as the dog ran off.

As a result of the officers’ investigation, Kevin Graham was arrested for simple assault, the post said.  

Animal Services and medical personnel responded to the scene, and the officer’s bite wounds were treated. The St. George Police Department is reviewing the situation and the investigation is ongoing.

“It’s just unfortunate for everybody involved. We don’t ever want to see this happen,” Atkin said.

Email: mshoup@stgnews.com

Twitter:  @STGnews | @MikaylaShoup

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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10 Comments

  • Redbud October 23, 2018 at 2:11 pm

    “He just got scraped”? Sounds like the dog’s owner was trying to excuse the behavior of the animal. That officer had every right to shoot that dog. How irresponsible in the first place to leave a dog chained up in the yard that bites people. Don’t own pets if you can’t properly care for them and control them.

  • ScanMeister October 23, 2018 at 3:03 pm

    Agree with Redbud…..I lay the blame at the foot of the owner/s. (proper care and control)

  • Craig October 23, 2018 at 7:37 pm

    Has anyone checked to see how the dog is doing? This is sad for all involved.

  • KR567 October 23, 2018 at 9:00 pm

    The only victim here is the dog

  • steveo October 23, 2018 at 9:56 pm

    We all have had to run or defend ourselves against this dog for years numerous times very aggressive we have warned the owners several times he will come after you 100 percent of the time when hes out. I love dogs but it could have and would have been a lot worse if this hadn’t happened. This cop was 100 percent justified.

  • xbcmc059 October 23, 2018 at 10:24 pm

    OK, next.

  • Carpe Diem October 24, 2018 at 7:31 am

    Pitbull mix!? Attacked a cop? How is this dog not put down? So sick of hearing about them attacking and killing people.
    Especially when they have low life owners as this “Kevin” appears to be.

    • Carpe Diem October 24, 2018 at 7:34 am

      And BTW no surprise, this Kevin Graham sports some nice neck tattoos and is still in custody.
      Too bad he can’t read the true meaning of those cute tatts.

      • LunchboxHero October 24, 2018 at 12:54 pm

        Nasty. Those neck tattoos just scream “trashy”. Sounds like this was no exception!

  • LunchboxHero October 24, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    How shocking for a pit bull mix to behave this way. Usually it’s the vicious dachshunds, cocker spaniels, and chocolate labs that you have to watch it for.

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