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Blade, a Lake County sheriff’s department K-9 officer, was shot during a foot chase Wednesday in Gary, Indiana. | Lake County K9 Association on Facebook

Man shot by police in Gary has died, K-9 officer recovering

SHARE Man shot by police in Gary has died, K-9 officer recovering
SHARE Man shot by police in Gary has died, K-9 officer recovering

An 18-year-old man who was shot by a Lake County sheriff’s department officer Wednesday in northwest Indiana has died.

Marquis Thomas of Merrillville was shot by the sheriff’s officer during a foot chase and died Thursday night of his wounds, according to Indiana State Police.

About 3 p.m. the officer conducted a traffic stop on a 2007 Toyota Avalon in the 700 block of 42nd Avenue in Gary, and a passenger ran from the car, state police said. The driver of the silver car also drove off west on 42nd Avenue from the stop.

The sheriff’s officer and his K-9 partner, Blade, followed Thomasfrom the car down an alley toward railroad tracks that were north of the stop, state police said. At some point near the tracks, Thomasfired shots at the officer and struck the police dog.

The officer returned fire and struck Thomas, who was taken to Methodist Hospitals North Lake campus in Gary, police said. He was later transferredto Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, where he died.

The dog, a 6-year-old Dutchshepherd with four years on the force’s Gang Unit, was taken to Purdue University Animal Hospital in West Lafayette.

The Lake County K9 Association said the dog had surgery to remove bullet fragments from his jaw and neck Wednesday night and was expected to undergo surgery again Thursday to repair a broken jaw.

Thedriver of the Avalon was located and gave a statement, police said. He was not considered a threat in the case.

An investigation by state police into the officer’s use of force was ongoing.

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