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A Glendale police K-9 unit dog wounded during an exchange of gunfire with an escaped inmate is on the mend after surgery, department officials said Friday.
Martin had been sought by authorities since he walked away from a supervised off-site Arizona Department of Corrections work crew in February, said Officer Tiffany Smith, Glendale Police Department spokeswoman.
The U.S. Marshals Violent Offender Task Force, which included Glendale officers, was searching for Martin when they located him at a residence near 24th Street and Baseline Road in Phoenix, Smith said.
Just before 5:30 p.m., Glendale Police K-9 Officer Wes Zygmont and Mick were at the scene as officers attempted to contact Martin in the home. Martin fled through a rear yard and jumped over a back wall.
Zygmont confronted Martin and ordered him to stop, but Martin responded by firing several shots at the officer, police said. Zygmont, who was not hit, returned fire, striking Martin multiple times, Roth said. Martin was pronounced dead at the scene.
Mick was struck during that exchange and taken to a Phoenix area animal hospital, where he was treated and underwent surgery for two separate gunshot wounds, Smith said.
Police would not comment on an official condition, but Smith said Mick is recovering.
Photos posted on the Glendale Police Department Facebook page show Mick with his head up and appearing alert. He had a bandage around his front right leg, stitches in his right hind leg and stitches in the left side of his muzzle.
Smith said she could not confirm more details about Mick’s wounds or whether Mick was struck by gunfire from Martin or the officer during their exchange, referring questions to the Phoenix Police Department, which is conducting the investigation.
Phoenix police did not immediately respond to an inquiry from The Arizona Republic Friday afternoon.
In 2013, Zygmont was wounded during an exchanged of gunfire involving two other Glendale officers and a suspect who was fleeing police and threatening people at gunpoint. The suspect was killed. Zygmont’s K-9 partner, Ronin, was also killed during the exchange of gunfire.
Mick, who joined the Glendale police K-9 Unit in 2014, mistakenly bit a nearby teenager during a pursuit of a suspected carjacker in 2016 while working with Zygmont. City officials offered to work on a settlement with the boy’s family to pay for medical expenses.
Tuesday’s shooting was the 62nd involving law enforcement in Maricopa County this year, and the 31st resulting in a death, according to a count maintained by The Arizona Republic.
The Republic’s Bayan Wang contributed to this story.
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