Deputies share update on police K-9 shot in leg during pursuit

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SAN DIEGO — Deputies shared an update Tuesday on K-9 Cezar, a police dog that was shot as law enforcement pursued three robbery suspects.

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department says K-9 Cezar needed surgery after he was shot in the leg late Sunday. Deputies were chasing three armed suspects after a robbery at the 7-Eleven in Lakeside.

The suspects led officers on a chase from Interstate 8 in Lakeside to Riverside County. Deputies say the armed men ran from the car in Murrieta and tried to carjack a passerby. That’s when a San Diego sheriff’s deputy released K-9 Cezar.

Cezar was hit by a bullet fired from one suspect’s gun, police said. That suspect and a second were quickly taken into custody, and a third suspect was eventually found hiding in the bushes a short distance away, according to police.

Cezar was taken to VCA California Veterinary Specialists in Murrieta, where a surgeon removed bullet fragments from his leg. The sheriff’s department said Cezar is expected to make a full recovery.

“He likely kept the suspect from getting away and possibly hurting others. Cezar did as he was trained. He protected his deputy handler, the public and our law enforcement partners,” deputies said on Twitter.

The sheriff’s department said in a Tuesday update that Cezar will be off duty for the next two weeks as he receives “tons of TLC.”

He’ll then return to training with his handler Deputy Avedesian to warm up his leg for runs and jumps over obstacles, sheriff’s officials said.

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