PAULDING COUNTY, Ga. -- The Paulding County sheriff says a deputy was following his training when he killed a police dog, WGCL reports.
K-9 Verro bit the deputy instead of the man deputies were chasing.
"The deputy pulled his service weapon and discharged it, striking and killing K-9 Verro," Sgt. Henson said.
K-9 Verro had been a member of the Paulding County Sheriff's Department for over 7 years.
Friday he was shot and killed in the line of duty.
K-9 Verro and his partner, Corporal Kilgore, were responding to a male suspect who had fled on foot.
Corporal Kilgore spotted the man jumping fences, left his car to pursue the suspect and K-9 Verro.
He was able to fit through a partially opened section of his onboard kennel to the front cabin and got out through a partially opened window.
No officer knew the dog was out.
K-9 Verro's training kicked into gear and he attacked a fellow Paulding County deputy also involved in the foot pursuit.
"He actually bit the deputy in the back of the leg and as these dogs are trained, they're trained to bite and hold," Sgt, Henson said. "And the deputy, not knowing the dog had been released, pulled his service weapon and discharged it."
The officer had puncture wounds and scratches to his leg.
The unfortunate incident has left everyone devastated.
The sheriff's department says during the hot summer months, K-9s will only wear bulletproof vests that would identify them in dangerous situations, so the officer involved would have had no idea the dog attacking him was part of his team.