Charges filed against suspect in Washington County car-jacking, shooting of K-9 Tess

Alvie Jared Grover mug shot from February 2017. Courtesy: Washington County Sheriff's Office

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Utah, Sept. 1, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — An arrest warrant was served Friday on the man police say was involved in the Tuesday, Aug. 29, shooting of K-9 officer Tess.

Alvie Jared Grover, 55, of St. George, now faces multiple charges in connection to the incident, according to a news release from Barry Golding, of the Washington County Attorney’s Office.

Grover has been charged with:

  • Aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony.
  • Theft of a firearm, a second-degree felony.
  • Possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, a second-degree felony.
  • Theft of property (operable motor vehicle), a second-degree felony.
  • Criminal mischief, a second-degree felony.
  • Injuring or interfering with a police service animal, a third-degree felony.
  • Failure to respond to officer’s signal to stop, a third-degree felony.
  • Reckless driving, a class B misdemeanor.

Cash-only bail was set at $100,000.

K-9 Tess and Grover were both injured in Santa Clara, near St. George, at about 11 p.m. Tuesday, according to a news release from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.

Police were dispatched to the area of 400 N. Bluff St. in St. George, where a man was said to be causing a disturbance.

“While police were en route, the suspect reportedly physically assaulted a citizen and stole his truck,” the news release said. “The owner of the truck told police that there was an assault rifle and ammunition in the truck.”

Investigators believed that the suspect abandoned the first stolen truck and stole a second truck. When St. George police spotted the second truck, a pursuit ensued, but was terminated for public safety.

A few minutes later, a truck was reported to have crashed into a residence near 2500 Santa Clara Drive. Police from multiple agencies responded and found the suspect sitting in the driver’s seat of the truck. While police were trying to talk him into surrendering, WCSO K-9 Officer Tess, a 7-year-old female Malinois, arrived at the scene.

“After about 30 minutes, the suspect opened the door of the truck,” the sheriff’s office news release said. “The K-9 jumped into the cab. Almost immediately, the suspect fired shots from a handgun, striking the K-9 in the head.”

Officers from the Santa Clara and St. George police departments and the WCSO fired their duty weapons at the suspect. The suspect was struck multiple times and was then taken into custody and transported to the hospital.

Grover was served with the arrest warrant at the hospital where he is receiving medical care. He will remain in the hospital until he is medically cleared for booking at the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.

On Wednesday, a news release from the WCSO said Tess had been treated and released from the Las Vegas Veterinary Specialty Center in Las Vegas. She apparently had been shot twice, but was expected to make a full recovery.


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