"He's a partner"; ATF agents shoot to save K-9 at Tucson home
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
Reporter: Maggie Vespa
But suffice it to say when one is under attack, the rest will do whatever it takes to save him, regardless if he has two legs or four.
That's just what happened Thursday morning, during a deadly dogfight on the city's west side.
Agents from special response team three of the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms are based out of
The first went off without a hitch.
The second almost cost them one of their own.
Just minutes into a full scale federal search for a suspected gang member, the shortest member of the squad finished the job.
"Borra alerted to a closet in one of the bedrooms, and our agents were able to call out that suspect,” said assistant special agent Carlos Canino.
Borra is this team's one and only tactical K-9 unit.
Thursday morning inside a home near
That's when terror ensued.
"I heard a commotion,” said Canino. “I turned around and looked, and the pit bull was right on top of him."
One of two pit bulls corralled by ATF agents had broken free, tearing into Borra from behind.
The team realized, their K-9 was in a dogfight for his life.
9OYS reporter Maggie Vespa asked, “You said people were trying to separate them?”
Canino responded, “Oh yeah agents... That was one remarkable thing I saw today. Agents were trying to go hands on, trying to separate both dogs."
But Canino says those efforts were in vain, and Borra, was running out of time.
So agents made a hard choice. Shoot the dog, to save their K-9.
"You know I've been on this job a lot time,” said Canino. “I've never seen that before. It was a tough thing to see."
But in the end, he says the choice to save one of their own was no choice at all.
"Obviously, you know, he's there as a tool, but to us he's more than that. He's a partner,” he said. “Just because he has four legs and a big nose, he's no less than us."
Several local agencies, including TPD, were working with ATF at the time.
Everyone sprang into action, taking both dogs to a nearby animal hospital.
Sadly the pit bull did not make it.
Borra was injured, but only needed stitches.
Canino says he is back in