Gwinnett County

Investigators reveals new details in K-9 officer shooting

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Lawyers for a teenager accused of wounding a police dog in a shooting claim the police might be at fault.

Channel 2′s Gwinnett County Bureau Chief Tony Thomas was the only reporter in the courtroom Wednesday as investigators revealed new details in the case.

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The GBI says there were eight to 10 shots fired in the woods on Pine Lane in Gwinnett County, first by a hiding teenager, then police.

K-9 Kai was closest to the teen and the only one hit.

On Wednesday, Levi Bryan’s defense lawyer, Maryann Blend, tried to convince a judge the teenager might not have been the one to shoot the dog.

“It sounds like the dog was basically between Levi and the officers, and which gun the bullets came from-- they haven’t made that determination yet,” Blend said.


Prosecutors say there’s plenty of evidence to show that the 17-year-old went into his ex girlfriends home on May 23rd armed with a gun. He ran away and then fired at police as they hunted him in some nearby woods.

“There were a total of anywhere from eight to 10 gunshots that could be heard on the video recording,” GBI agent Lucas Beyer said.

Bryan looked very young as he sat quietly at the defense table, just feet from where a GBI agent and Gwinnett police officer described the shooting.

“He became aggressive and reached for his shirt, lifted up his shirt and brandished his firearm in his waistband,” Gwinnett County Officer A. Roach said.

GBI agent Lucas Beyer told the judge evidence shows Bryan fired first, then police returned fire.

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“Mr. Bryan acknowledged that he pulled the trigger at minimum once, but it was possible he could have pulled it twice. But he couldn’t recall. Mr. Bryan stated he was under the influence of Xanax pills at the time of the shooting,” Beyer said.

Despite defense objections, the judge sided with prosecutors.

“The defense actions were starting this firefight with law enforcement, and ultimately, the K-9 was injured,” the prosecutor said.

K-9 Kai is recovering and could rejoin the force. Bryan will remain in jail, being held without bond for the time being.