Coventry & Warwickshire

Stratford-upon-Avon police Taser dog during arrest

A dog was Tasered by police officers who were attacked as they made an arrest in a crowded street.

The officers were set upon by the dog as they tried to apprehended a man in Stratford-upon-Avon on Wednesday, for an alleged breach of bail conditions.

One officer was bitten and was treated in hospital.

Warwickshire Police said its officers took the action to protect nearby members of the public, including children, and the dog was unharmed.

One witness, who did not want to be named, said the dog looked like a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. He said it started convulsing before lying immobile on the ground for five minutes.

"The policeman was trying to arrest the man and the dog took exception - it was having a good bark," he said.

"It was shaking. I thought he killed the dog but it got up again."

'Threat to public'

Another witness, Sam Burton, said the arrested man was lying on the ground with an officer's knee on his back.

"Members of the public started shouting at the policeman, saying 'you shouldn't Taser a dog'.

"There was a guy standing next to me shouting 'I could have handled that dog - you didn't need to Taser him'."

But, Insp Darren Webster from Warwickshire Police said: "It is our duty to protect the public from harm first and foremost and in this instance, the use of a Taser was appropriate and proportionate to the threat posed by the dog which was being highly aggressive to both the officers and its owner.

"This was a very busy area in central Stratford and unfortunately the Taser was required to ensure the dog did not harm anyone else."

The force said the dog, whose breed is unknown, was subsequently checked by a vet and sustained no injuries.

A 32-year-old man from Stratford-upon-Avon, has been charged with assaulting a police officer and with being in charge of dog dangerously out of control.

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