Gang member admitted shooting Delano K-9, turning toward officers while holding gun: reports

Crime Watch

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — A gang member shot and wounded by police over the weekend admitted to shooting a Delano K-9 and turning toward officers with the gun in his hand, court documents say.

Interviewed by a sheriff’s investigator at Kern Medical, Eduardo Figueroa said he shot the dog because he thought he’d get bit, then he pointed the gun at officers because he’d shot the dog, the newly-released documents say.

A detective asked if he expected to get shot.

“Of course I did,” Figueroa said according to the documents.

Figueroa, 34, is charged with multiple felonies in connection with Saturday’s shooting and is scheduled to be formally arraigned Monday. He has a lengthy criminal record and multiple felony convictions, and is a documented and self-admitted member of a criminal street gang, the documents say.

The K-9, Axel, is recovering at home. Bullet fragments were found near his right shoulder and along the shoulder neck area near the spinal column, according to the documents.

A doctor at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital cleaned and dressed his wounds and removed small bullet fragments near the surface.

The events leading to the shooting began at about 8:09 p.m. when a silver Nissan Altima refused to pull over for McFarland police. It led police on a chase through the city, running stop signs and speeding, according to the filings.

The car stopped at East Sherwood Avenue and San Lucas Street and the driver was identified as Figueroa, the filings say. Officers repeatedly ordered him out of the vehicle. Figueroa refused, and showed his left hand but not his right, according to the documents.

“They gave him so many times … to put his hands out the window,” said a witness according to the documents.

Officers used a less-lethal weapon — a pepper ball launcher — but Figueroa still didn’t get out, the filings say. He opened the door as if he’d leave but then shut it.

A K-9 from the Delano Police Department was requested. Axel’s handler released the dog, which “apprehended Figueroa through the open driver’s side door,” the filings say.

Figueroa brandished a revolver at the dog, firing at least twice, according to the documents. Seven officers returned fire, hitting Figueroa and the car. He dropped the gun.

Figueroa was given medical treatment at the scene and taken to Kern Medical.

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