A gunman shot and killed a K9 officer in La Vergne, Tennessee after open fire on a patrol vehicle, ABC News reported.
The gunman pulled alongside Officer Justin Darby and his Belgian Malinois K9 officer Sjaak while they were driving and open fired on their patrol car, according to ABC News.
A K9 officer has been shot and killed after a suspect opened fire on a patrol vehicle with the dog and his human partner inside. https://t.co/GwWN9aOQwr
— ABC News (@ABC) November 19, 2020
Darby returned fire before the suspect allegedly drove further into the parking lot, according to ABC News.
The suspect reportedly came to a stop after hitting a parked car. Once stopped, officers discovered the suspect sustained a gunshot wound during the shootout.
Darby was not hurt in the incident, but his partner Sjaak was struck three times in the shootout, according to ABC News.
Sjaak was taken to a veterinary hospital and underwent emergency surgery but did not survive the operation. (RELATED: Florida Man Who Killed Police K-9 Sentenced To 25 Years)
“Our K9s are members of the LPD family. Sjaak was an amazing and loyal dog. We ask everyone to keep Officer Darby, his family, and all of the La Vergne officers in your thoughts and prayers as we deal with this loss,” said La Vergne Police Interim Chief Chip Davis.
Sjaak joined the La Vergne police department in 2014.