A suspected vehicle theft fatally shot and killed a police dog in southeast Bakersfield and was then killed in backfire by officers, authorities said.
The shooting occurred late Tuesday evening when officers attempted to stop a reported stolen vehicle on Highway 58, Bakersfield police said in a statement.
The vehicle came off the road, up an embankment, through a chain link fence and was hindered.
The driver fled but was spotted in the back of a residential building with the help of a Kern County sheriff’s helicopter.
“When a police K-9 handler and his K-9 partner approached the suspect, the suspect opened fire and hit the K-9. Two officers returned fire and beat the suspect, ”the statement said.
Police said the suspect, who received medical attention but died on the scene, had a firearm secured. The police said that his identity would be revealed by the district judiciary.
Police found that the two officers who fired their weapons were equipped with body-worn cameras. The footage will be published “if the investigation allows it,” the statement said.
Police dog Jango was pronounced dead at a veterinary clinic. He was a Belgian Malinois born on November 15, 2015 in the Netherlands and assigned to his handler in March 2017.