A sheriff's K9 is recovering Tuesday, after a weekend ordeal sent her into emergency surgery.
K9 "Tessa" was shot in the paw Friday night as deputies tried to stop a pit bull from attacking her while they were searching for a transient wanted on several prior criminal offenses, according to Riverside County Sheriff's Spokesman Deputy Albert Martinez.
The transient was ultimately arrested by sheriff's deputies in the Lake Elsinore area the next day.
Shawn Redding, 35, was arrested about 9 a.m. Saturday and was booked on the warrants -- for possession of a controlled substance, assault and battery, and petty theft -- and on suspicion of resisting arrest, Martinez said. He was being held on $25,000 bail, and was scheduled to appear in court at the Murrieta Southwest Justice Center Wednesday.
Redding was actually first taken into custody about 10 p.m. Friday by a deputy in Lakeland Village, but he broke free and ran into an open field, Martinez said.
A subsequent search for Redding was conducted, and a sheriff's canine handler and his canine partner Tessa were called out, Martinez said.
"While searching a residential yard, a large pit bull jumped out of an open window and attacked Tessa," Martinez said.
"Another deputy who was searching with the canine handler fired his firearm at the pit bull, which halted the attack and caused a fatal wound to the attacking dog," Martinez said. "Unfortunately, one of the rounds struck Tessa in the right paw."
Tessa was treated at a veterinarian's office, and received emergency surgery. She stayed overnight at the vet's office, but is now home with her handler, according to Martinez.
"Tessa's recovery is promising and she should be able to return to work," he added.