Dog involved in Thursday's downtown Roanoke attack had history of violence

Dog euthanized after being shot twice, police say

ROANOKE, Va. – A dog was euthanized and two people were hospitalized after an attack Thursday morning in downtown Roanoke, police said.

Roanoke police and animal wardens responded to a report of a dog acting aggressively in the 100 block of Campbell Avenue Southwest at 10:21 a.m.

Police said an officer discovered the dog, a bull terrier, had been shot by a citizen.

The dog's owner told police his dog ran out of his apartment on Campbell Avenue Southwest when he opened the door, police said.

A 34-year-old woman was pushing a stroller with a toddler inside it. Police said the dog approached aggressively and the woman picked up the child.

The dog then bit the woman's arm, police said.

A citizen attempted to the help the woman by hitting the dog with his cane. Police said the dog then released the woman and bit the citizen on the arm.


A second citizen grabbed his collar while a third citizen began pepper-spraying the dog, police said.

The dog temporarily released the second victim's arm, and bit the shoe of the citizen who was holding its collar. Police said this citizen was not injured, and the dog continued to bite the second victim's arm.

Another citizen struck the dog, which caused the dog to release the second victim's arm, police said. Other citizens tried to contain the dog.

Police said the dog broke free and ran into the middle of the street and aggressively moved toward a person who had a handgun. This person shot the dog twice, police said.

"Someone was yelling to shoot it. I had my gun in my car," Paul Burek said. "I went and got my gun; once it started to pull away from people to walk across the road, I shot it."

The dog was taken by the animal warden to Angels of the Assisi for emergency treatment. Police said the dog was euthanized by the veterinarian.

The victims who were bitten on the arm were taken to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital for treatment by Roanoke Fire EMS, police said. Their conditions were not given.

No charges have been placed and Thursday's incident remains under investigation, police said.

Campbell Avenue, which was closed from First Street to Second Street, has reopened.

Roanoke police had previously responded to the same location to an incident involving the dog, according to police. Police responded to the 100 block of Campbell Avenue Southwest at 2:23 a.m. Dec. 26.

In the December incident, the dog ran off the back porch of the apartment and bit a man on his hand, police said. The man took himself to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital.

Police said Roanoke animal wardens conducted a follow-up investigation for the December incident, and the victim did not wish to file charges.

About the Authors: