COLUMBIA —The second pit bull dog that attacked people in the Grindstone Plaza parking lot was found and brought to animal control by a relative of the owner at 7:10 p.m. Wednesday.
Prior to the incident, the owner, Dakota Crites, 18, held the dogs in a fenced yard, but it is unclear how they escaped, said Molly Aust, an animal control employee.
Around noon on Wednesday, the two brown and white pit bull dogs, male and female, chased after the customers in the parking lot near Grindstone Parkway, according to witnesses.
A Missourian article reported that when the police officers received a report of loose pit bulls and multiple people being bitten, they found one victim, Mark Adamson, a GNC store manager.
Adamson tried to distract the dogs outside and help the customers, but when he attempted to call the police and animal control, the two pit bulls approached him. The female dog charged him and bit his right calf, Adamson said.
He drove to University Hospital to have his puncture wounds examined and received stitches.
After running through the plaza’s parking lot, the two pit bulls crossed the street and ran to Kohl’s Department Store parking lot, according to the press release. The dogs aggressively approached Officer Harlan Hatton, causing him to step back.
When the dog continued to move toward him, Hatton shot the male dog three times, Deputy Chief Tom Dresner said.
“The dog was rushing him, and he had to respond as quickly as possible,” Dresner said.
The second dog ran south from the area and was found by a relative of the owner and brought into the care of animal control at 7:10 p.m., Aust said.
Both dogs needed to be tested for rabies, so the second pit bull had to be euthanized, Aust said.
“They had to be put to sleep, so we can take a part of their brain tissue,” she said.
Both dogs have been sent to the state lab for testing, she said.
The owner was arrested and charged on suspicion of obstructing a governmental operation and third-degree assault.
The charge regarding obstruction of a governmental operation refers to the owner’s non-cooperation and non-compliance with the police officers, Dresner said.
The third-degree assault statute also applies because the owner “recklessly engaged in a conduct that created a grave risk of death or serious physical injury” to the people in the parking lot, he said.