policelights

DELTONA, Fla. (AP) — Officials in Florida say a police dog that died during a confrontation with an armed fugitive was actually shot by deputies.

Volusia County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Gary Davidson told local news outlets Thursday that two deputies opened fire as 34-year-old Eddie Powell punched and fought with K-9 Forest while pointing a gun at one of the deputies. There was no evidence that Powell fired his gun during the Nov. 22 fight.

Authorities say Powell, a fugitive wanted in Georgia, was also hit and was arrested the next day following a massive search. He faces multiple charges, including aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer and battery on a police dog.

Sheriff Ben Johnson backed his deputies, saying he still holds Powell responsible for Forest’s death. A memorial processional is scheduled for the K-9 on Friday.