Saturday, January 7, 2017

California: Merced officer shoots Pit Bull which tried to attack him during pursuit of fleeing driver, police say

CALIFORNIA -- A Merced police officer shot a stray dog Thursday night after the dog charged him while he was in pursuit of a driver fleeing in a stolen car, police reported.

Officer Steven Odom tried to stop a 2000 Honda Civic reported stolen about 10:30 p.m. near G and 27th streets. The driver fled, leading Odom in pursuit for about a mile, Lt. Don King said in a news release.

The chase ended when the driver lost control of the car and crashed into the laundry room of an apartment complex in the 200 block of West 19th Street. The driver fled on foot, King said.

When Odom was chasing the driver, he was confronted by a pit bull that charged him, the release stated. Odom shot the dog, and it was taken to Merced Animal Medical Center for treatment. An update on the dog’s condition was not available Friday.

Odom found and apprehended a suspect in the chase, 25-year-old Jake Ross. A female passenger who had been in the car wasn’t found, King said.

Ross was booked into the Merced County jail on a number of suspected vehicle code violations, as well as running a stop sign, evading police, driving on a suspended license, possession of stolen property and possession of burglary tools. He remained in custody Friday on more than $70,000 bail, according to booking records.

Jail records show Ross has previous offenses including probation violation, grand theft and drug possession.

Merced police are asking anyone with information regarding the incident to contact Officer Steven Odom at 209-385-7814, or the Merced Police Department tipster line at 209-385-7826.

(Merced Sun Star - January 6, 2017)