British Columbia

Police dog injured, officers assaulted in attempted police car theft

VPD canine unit police dog Vader suffered a broken tooth when he was punched and kicked early Monday morning.

VPD canine unit police dog Vader suffered a broken tooth; officers escaped with minor injuries

VPD canine unit police dog Vader suffered a broken tooth when a suspect punched and kicked him. (VPD)

A Vancouver police service dog was injured and officers assaulted while responding to a report of a man trying to steal a marked police car from a secure yard early Monday morning.

Vader, a member of the VPD canine unit, suffered a broken tooth and swollen mouth when the 66-year-old suspect kicked and punched him. The suspect also fought the police officers who suffered minor injuries.

"Vader courageously apprehended the violent suspect and hung on while the male kicked and punched Vader in the face, while holding the stolen keys in his fist as a weapon," said the VPD canine unit on Twitter.

Sgt. Aaron Roed said it was lucky the dog and officers weren't more seriously injured.

"This man was attempting to start the police car and flee the area ... and he had the keys clenched in his hand and was attempting to stab Vader." 

The suspect is facing multiple charges, including assault of a police officer and assault of a police dog. Vader was taken to a veterinarian where he was treated and released. 

A city staffer called police to the secured City of Vancouver National Yards in Strathcona at 6 a.m. where the man was attempting to steal the vehicle. 

Roed said the man was also arrested on Sunday in Stanley Park for uttering threats. He was taken to jail but then released on an undertaking to appear with conditions.

He is now in a local hospital awaiting assessment. 

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