St. Petersburg, Fla. (NewsRadio WFLA)-Just before 2 am Friday in St. Petersburg, the Pinellas Sheriff's Department, along with St. Petersburg Police were working a Joint Violent Crimes Task Force targeting stolen cars, when they pulled over a car, near 3rd. Ave. South and 26th Street.
The driver, 23 year old Elijah Johnson of St. Petersburg, first cooperated with the officers, then hit the gas and sped off!
Officers did not pursue the driver, instead the task force helicopter followed Johnson, as he ditched the car about a block away, and ran through several back yards.
K-Nine Officer Titan had him cornered, and according to the sheriffs report, that's when the suspect pulled out a weapon and shot the K-nine.
When Pinellas Deputy Sgt. David Stang arrived, the suspect fired again, striking Sgt. Stang. Sheriff Bob Gualtieri tells NewsRadio WFLA, the officer was wearing a protective vest, but the round missed the vest and the deputy was hit twice in the shoulder, causing him to lose a lot of blood.
Sgt. Stang is being treated at Bayfront Hospital. He's going to be okay. K-Nine Titan was shot in the foot and is in stable condition.
Johnson was found dead from a self inflicted gun shot wound near 3rd Ave S. and 26th St.
Sheriff Gualtieri says that, it is the early stages of this investigation, but it appears, no deputy or officer fired a weapon.
Photo credit: News Channel Eight