A Moses Lake K-9 is recovering after being shot in the eye by a suspect that eventually was killed at the scene of the incident.

The incident as reported by the Grant County Coroner, Jose L Rivera, age 22, was the person that was shot and killed by a Moses Lake Police officer on February 28th.

Here is the official report as filed by the Moses Lake Police Department:

Officer Nick Stewart, of the Moses Lake Police Department, was the officer that fired the fatal shot. Officer Stewart has been with MLPD for about 5 ½ years, after starting his career with the Othello Police Department. Ofc. Stewart has been a dog handler for about two years, is a Defensive Tactics Instructor as well as a member of the regional tactical response team. In 2016, Ofc. Stewart was awarded the Washington State Medal of Honor for Meritorious Service, for saving the life of a young man who was the passenger in a vehicle that crashed into a canal. This is the highest honor a police officer in the state of Washington can earn.

Officer Stewart’s K9 partner, Chief, was the K9 that was shot during the incident. K9 Chief was shot one time in the left eye and sustained injuries to his face and throat.

From body-worn video footage, Rivera’s vehicle came to a stop on Denton Rd after a lengthy pursuit. Rivera fled on foot from the vehicle with Officer Stewart and K9 Chief following closely with multiple Moses Lake Police Officers and Grant County Deputies following behind. In the video, you can hear Officer Stewart yell multiple times for Rivera to “drop the gun”. Within a few seconds, you hear multiple gunshots and can see Chief on the ground bleeding from his face. Rivera is also seen in the video laying on the ground, unresponsive, with a handgun lying next to him.

The good news is that K9 Chief is now recovering from his wounds and here is an updated report courtesy of the Moses Lake Police Department:

K9 Chief had his CT scan today in Pullman, and the results were very encouraging. Despite being shot directly in his left eye, none of the bullet fragments penetrated his skull. The bullet destroyed his eye, and broke his jaw, but didn’t do much other permanent damage.

Chief has been able to walk a bit with his handler and ate for the first time since the shooting. He is still trying to be a little feisty with the other dogs at the veterinary hospital, even if he has to sit down to rest as he is growling. He will have surgery tomorrow to remove the destroyed eye and will have a soft muzzle to protect the jaw for a bit.

The best news? If all goes well, K9 Chief will be headed back home to Moses Lake on Wednesday. He has a long road ahead of him to heal, but all signs are good at this point.

We'll keep you updated on more K9 Chief updates as we get them.


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