LAKE CITY, Fla. -- An officer with the Lake City Police Department shot and killed an "attack dog" after they say it was released by a man fleeing police.
The incident started when police tried to pull over a vehicle for trying to run another vehicle off the road shortly after 11 Thursday night, according to a news release from Lake City Police Department Assistant Public Information Officer Craig Strickland.
Strickland said a 26-year-old man called 911 Thursday night to report a truck was driving recklessly behind him and trying to run him off the road.
When police got to the intersection of U.S. 90 and S.W. Baya Drive, Strickland said they watched as both vehicles drove by and noted that the truck did not have its headlights on.
Police officers tried to pull the truck being driven by 47-year-old Timothy Schultz over but Strickland said Schultz did not stop for police.
Strickland said as officers followed Schultz he was going the speed limit, but he kept slamming on his brakes for an unknown reason.
Schultz continued driving until he reached his home in the 500 block of N.E. Jacksonville Loop where police saw him drive into his yard, Strickland said.
Once out of his truck, Schultz stood and stared at the officers, before being ordered to get onto the ground several times.
Strickland said at that point Schultz opened the door to the back seat of his truck, releasing his dog, a German Shepherd. Once out of the truck, Strickland said the dog ran aggressively toward police.
Due to the dog's aggressive behavior, one of the officers shot the dog. After being shot, Strickland said the dog ran from the area, towards the side of the home.
Officers then turned their attention back to dealing with Schultz, whom Strickland said was still not obeying officer's commands. Police used a Taser on Schultz, but there was no effect. In fact officers said Schultz even tried to remove the prongs from the Taser.
A second officer used his Taser on Schultz, this time causing him to fall to the ground. Strickland said as police attempted to handcuff Schultz he continued to fight with officers until they finally subdued him.
Officers contacted the animal shelter to treat the wounded German Shepherd. Schultz's injuries were treated by paramedics with Lifeguard EMS.
Police arrested Schultz and took him to the Columbia County Jail. Strickland said while at the jail, corrections officers tried to get Schultz to give relevant samples, since police suspected him of DUI. Schultz refused the test, resulting in his driver's license being automatically suspended for 12 months due to his refusal.
As police continued to investigate, Strickland said information came to light that Schultz's German Shepherd was receiving training to become a "personal protection" K-9 at Von Seestadt Kennels located in Lake City.
This is not the first incident between Schultz and police, Strickland said.
On September 15 of this year Schultz had an altercation with police that Strickland said mirrors this incident.
At that time officers were sent to the Rountree-Moore Ford on U.S. 90 due to a disturbance being caused by Schultz in which he threatened employees. Police ordered Schultz and two other men with him to leave the car dealership. When he refused and continued to make threats, Strickland said police tried to arrest him.
While trying to handcuff the combative Schultz, Strickland said officers tried to use a Taser on him but at that time it also had no effect. As he continued to fight with police, officers tried to pepper spray Schultz, but he turned away and tried to get into his truck.
Strickland said as one officer tried to arrest Schultz, another officer prevented Schultz's 17-year-old son and his son's 18-year-old friend from physically intervening.
Schultz was able to be removed from his vehicle and handcuffed after a Columbia County Sheriff's Office deputy heard the altercation over the police radio. Shultz at that time was also taken to the Columbia County Jail. Strickland said Schultz was out on bond for the September arrest when officers arrested him again Thursday night.
From his most recent run-in with the Lake City Police Department Schultz is facing numerous charges. Strickland said Schultz was booked on charges of reckless driving, fleeing and eluding, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated assault with intent to commit a felony, cruelty to animals, resisting an officer without violence, DUI and refusal to submit to a test.
Steve Shaw, Public Information Officer with the Lake City Police Department said the dog did not die and is recovering from being shot.
First Coast News