La Mesa police sergeant reveals why he jumped in front of wayward police K-9

Sgt. Mike Pierce took bite for fellow officers

LA MESA, Calif. - A La Mesa police sergeant is revealing why he jumped in front of a hostile El Cajon police K-9 and was bitten.

The incident happened February 4 when officers responded to a La Mesa home where a parolee was involved in a domestic dispute. When officers arrived, the man was missing. Police believed he might have hid under the house.

A K-9 unit from the El Cajon Police Department was called in to assist in the search.

"The dog handler gave out his commands to come out with his hands up," recalled La Mesa Sgt. Mike Pierce. "There was no answer. The dog handler put the dog right in front of the door that goes underneath the house and the next thing you know the dog turned around at the other officers and myself and ran towards us."

Pierce made an instant decision to put himself between the dog and his officers.

"I saw what was going to happen. I stepped in front of my other officers and took the bite," Pierce said.

Pierce still has puncture scars on his left hand -- two on top and one underneath.

"It hurts a little bit, but you get over it, and that's just part of being a K-9," he told 10News.

Pierce revealed that he knew what needed to be done because he once handled K-9s when he was in the Air Force.

"I'm not a hero, that's for sure. I'm just a supervisor that was looking after his troops, that's all. And I had a little bit more training than they did, and I put it to use," he said.

Pierce was awarded the Meritorious Conduct Medal from his department.

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