The shooting happened shortly before 11 a.m. when Tampa officers responded to a burglary call at 1022 E 25th Ave., said spokesman Steve Hegarty.
Three officers entered the home with K9 Indo and encountered Joey Antonio Kennedy, 40. Indo "engaged" Kennedy, who threw a flaming accelerant onto the dog and his handler, Officer Tim Bergman, Hegarty said.
"He's got it in a container of some sort and starts tossing it at the dog and the officer," Hegarty said.
Bergman opened fire, hitting Kennedy at least once.
K9 Indo received burns on the head. The officer was able to extinguish the flames and was uninjured. K9 Indo will recover from the burns and will be okay, according to a TPD spokesperson.
The wanted felon is accused of tossing ignited “Kilz” brand paint primer, on the officer and police dog.
Outside the home, News Channel 8 spotted Officer Bergman with spots of “Kilz” all over his shirt, arm and pants.
Animal advocate, Megan Trethewey doesn’t hold back when she hears about officers, human or canine, hurt by bad guys. “You have this individual, this scum of the earth that needs to be off the street” said Trethewey.
“There are two officers that were hurt today in the line of duty because this guy just did not want to get caught. He had no respect for life. For either life, either police officers out there” she said.
Bergman, a 12-year veteran of the agency, was placed on administrative leave while the shooting is investigated, which is standard in such cases.
Kennedy was taken to a local hospital with injuries that police said did not appear to be life-threatening.
Kennedy has been arrested more than a dozen times in Florida since 1992 and has served prison time for sexually battering a child, failing to register as a sex offender, resisting an officer with violence and battery on a law enforcement officer.
(TampaBay.com - Jan 12, 2017)