INDIAN HEAD, Md. (AP) ― The Charles County sheriff's office says an officer pursuing an assault suspect was injured in a pit bull attack.
Authorities say the officer responded to a call from a woman who said her boyfriend was beating her Thursday in Indian Head. They say 35-year-old Joseph Romanowski of Harford County ran from the house, and the officer went after him. But then a pit bull charged at the officer, grabbed his ankle and tried to bite him. The officer fell and shot the dog, fearing it would attack again.
Other officers arrested and charged Romanowski with second-degree assault. The injured officer was treated at a hospital. The dog was taken to a clinic, where it died.
Authorities say when Romanowski heard police were on their way, he unchained the pit bull, which was being trained for dog fights.
Update May 22, 2010 10:33am - The Washington Post reports that the officer was treated at a local hospital for a wrist injury that occurred when he fell.
The dog's unconfirmed name was "Twin".
Investigators say that they "found what appeared to be a fresh cut in the leash part of a leash-chain system in the back".
Officers charged Romanowski with first- and second-degree assault in connection with the alleged attack of his ex-girlfriend, and second-degree assault of a law enforcement officer, in connection with dog's alleged attack of the cop. He also was charged with theft under $100 after getting his ex-girlfriend's car keys.