WHITLEY COUNTY, Ind. (WNDU) – A K-9 patrol dog was killed in a fiery crash after a multiple-county police chase that allegedly started with an armed carjacking in Plymouth and ended in Whitley County.
A 31-year-old man is behind bars following the crash. Clarence Shearer, of Fort Wayne, was booked into the Allen County Jail Thursday on several active warrants in that county.
Police say the incident began around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, when the Plymouth Police Department put out a dispatch of an armed carjacking of a black 2016 Chrysler. The carjacking happened near U.S. 30 and Pioneer Drive, according to a release from the Indiana State Police.
Officers initially tried to stop the alleged carjacker near Meijer Drive on U.S. 30 in Kosciusko County once backup arrived, but the Chrysler swerved to the side of the road, stopped to let a passenger out and sped off eastbound on U.S. 30.
After that initial attempt to stop the Chrysler, police continued to give chase, but the driver would not stop.
The pursuit eventually arrived in Whitley County, where a deputy positioned his car at the intersection of U.S. 30 and County Road 450 West and put out Stop Sticks, trying to stop the Chrysler.
Reportedly in an attempt to avoid the Stop Sticks, Shearer allegedly hit the deputy's vehicle, which contained a K-9 patrol dog. The deputy's vehicle burst into flames, and police were not able to get the dog out of the car.
The dog died on the scene. Police did not immediately identify the K-9. The deputy was unharmed.
Shearer suffered minor injuries and is being treated at a hospital.
The passenger who was let out in Kosciusko County was arrested by Plymouth police and booked into the Marshall County Jail. That person has yet to be identified.
Lanes in both directions on U.S. 30 were closed for several hours and were expected to be reopened around 7 p.m.
Officers from the Kosciusko County Sheriff's Office, Warsaw Police Department, Whitley County Sheriff's Department, Pierceton Police Department, Winona Lake Police Department and Indiana State Police were involved in the pursuit and/or crash.