K-9 shot, suspect dead after pursuit in Isanti County

Updated: February 22, 2021 01:05 PM
Created: February 21, 2021 04:02 PM

Officials say a carjacking and pursuit that started in Blaine and ended in Isanti County left a suspect dead and a K-9 wounded after shots were fired.

Blaine Police Chief Brian Podany said the pursuit started with a theft call at the Kohl's on the 10300 block of Baltimore Street Northeast. Officers found a suspect and a stolen vehicle, but the suspects then fled the area.

One of the suspects, armed with a gun, then carjacked a separate vehicle at a nearby business. Police found the suspect and then began a pursuit northbound on Highway 65.

The chase ended at Highway 65 and Highway 107 near Braham, Minnesota, when the suspect vehicle became disabled, Podany said. Two suspects got out of the stolen vehicle and started fleeing on foot.

One woman who was nearly hit by the suspects during the chase told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the vehicle was "going extremely fast. And, it's like, holy cow, he's coming straight at me and I don't have any place to go."

Podany said shots were fired, and bullets hit the K-9 and one of the suspects. That suspect was pronounced dead at the scene. The other suspect — identified as Joseph William Heroff — was taken into custody with no injuries.

In a post on Facebook, the Anoka Police Department confirmed a K-9 named Bravo had suffered multiple gunshot wounds. At last check, the K-9 was in stable condition. The department said Monday morning that Bravo hadn't yet gone in for surgery but was "resting comfortably" at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Medical Center.

An officer who responded to the incident in Blaine was taken to the hospital with what are believed to be minor injuries, Podany said.

Highway 65 was closed in both directions between Highway 107 and Andree Drive Northeast while the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) investigated.

The BCA reported it was unclear who shot first between police and suspects; that remains part of the ongoing investigation.

This is a breaking news story. KSTP is working to get more details on this story and will post updates as more information becomes available.

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