Columbus, OH – A Columbus police officer was forced to fatally shoot his K9 partner on Saturday, after the police dog attacked the officer and latched onto his arm, the department said.
The incident occurred at 8:58 a.m., as Columbus Police Officer Brian Carter was training at the police K9 office with his partner, K9 Benzi, the agency said in a press release.
“Officer Carter was correcting Benzi’s behavior through verbal commands when the K9 attacked him,” the statement read.
Officer Carter, a 10-year veteran of the department’s K9 unit, was forced to shoot his partner during the attack, and was left with “serious bites to his arms,” police said.
A tourniquet had to be used to slow the officer’s bleeding, and he was listed in stable condition at Grant Hospital following surgery.
K9 Benzi was transported to a local veterinary hospital, where he was humanely euthanized.
“Benzi was more than Officer Carter’s K9 partner,” the Columbus Police Department tweeted. “He was a member of the Carter family. They are all in our healing prayers during this difficult time.
The three-year-old Belgian Malinois had been with the department for two years.
In March, K9 Benzi and Officer Carter were hailed in a “much deserved shout out” by the department, after they helped apprehend a burglar at the Ohio State University campus.
K9 Benzi was Officer Carter’s second K9 partner.
Columbus Police K9 Unit Supervisor Sergeant Mark Cartwright said this incident marked the first occasion where a Columbus officer shot his K9 partner.
The investigation into the incident is ongoing, police said.