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Deputy kills pit bull that attacked

CENTRAL POINT — A Jackson County sheriff's deputy shot and killed a pit bull Tuesday morning after the animal attacked him and another man.

The attack occurred just after 6 a.m., according to the sheriff's office. Sgt. James Kocina was driving south on Hamrick Road after his graveyard shift when he saw an 18-year-old man running around a parked vehicle near the intersection of Hamrick and Brookdale Drive.

Kocina stopped and left his vehicle to check on the man, who told Kocina he was running from a dog that had just bitten him on the upper thigh. The man had reportedly been skateboarding in the area when the dog ran out and bit him, Sheriff Nate Sickler said.

"As (Kocina) was getting engaged with the 18-year-old, the dog came around and latched onto his leg," Sickler said. "It all happened really fast."

Kocina attempted to free himself but was unsuccessful, Sickler said. Kocina then shot the dog once in the head, killing it.

"He felt comfortable taking the shot," Sickler said. "It's do that, or let a large pit bull gnaw on your leg."

The 18-year-old declined medical treatment. Kocina received treatment at Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center.

"He's doing good," Sickler said. "The injury wasn't too serious."

Jackson County Animal Care & Control retrieved the dog, determined to be about 7 years old. These types of incidents are not common, Sickler said, adding he's seen similar ones occur every few years.

"I think in my whole career, I've heard of about three or four with the departments I've worked at," Sickler said.

The owners, who live across the street from where the attack occurred, were inside their house at the time, police said. An attempt to reach them Tuesday morning was unsuccessful.

Central Point police and Jackson County Animal Control are still investigating the case. Any information about the case should be referred to Central Point police. The case number is 17-5586.

— Reach reporter Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or rpfeil@mailtribune.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/ryanpfeil.

Deputy kills pit bull that attacked