Officer says he warned man who stabbed police dog
The police officer who shot a man who was stabbing his police dog told his disciplinary hearing on Wednesday that he gave a verbal warning before he fired his gun.
Acting Staff Sgt. Bruce Edwards is accused of using unnecessary force in the July 2006 wounding of Kirk Steele, who spent several weeks on life-support after he was shot by Edwards four times.
Police started chasing Steele after he tried to run from a home on 99th Avenue near 69th Avenue. Edwards told the hearing that he warned Steele that he was a police officer and would send his dog Wizzard after him if he did not stop.
Edwards gave Wizzard the command to apprehend Steele after he jumped a fence and started to head towards the railway tracks.
Edwards then saw a flash of silver and realized that Steele was stabbing the dog. At that point, Edwards believed the pursuit had turned into a lethal engagement so he drew his pistol and started shooting.
When asked under cross-examination if he warned Steele that he planned to shoot, Edwards replied that he was confident he did, even though he can't remember the exact words he used.
Other officers who had also given chase had Taser stun guns, but Edwards told the hearing that he didn't carry one.
Wizzard survived the attack and returned to duty for another year. The dog, who was later retired, remained Edwards' family pet until its death last year.