TAMPA (FOX 13) - Police say an officer opened fire Thursday afternoon after a burglary suspect tossed flaming liquid that burned the head of his canine companion.
According to TPD, it was just before 11 a.m. when they received a report of a burglary in progress at a home on East 25th Avenue. When they arrived, they realized that a car parked outside the house belonged to a man with an extensive criminal record and outstanding warrants.
K-9 Officer Tim Bergman was among the officers who headed inside the home. When K-9 'Indo' confronted the burglar, police say the man "tossed a flaming accelerant" at the dog and the officer.
"The suspect had some sort of a can or some sort of a container that he lit, so it has some sort of a liquid in it that is flammable," police spokesman Steve Hegarty explained. "He threw it and it landed on the dog. It landed on the officer as well. The officer opened fire."
Officer Bergman was able to extinguish the flames with his hands, but not before Indo suffered burns to his head.
The suspect -- later identified as Joey Antonio Kennedy -- was hit in the abdomen. The 40-year-old was taken to the hospital in critical condition.
Police said he was "known" to them.
"He had a grand theft, a failure to register as an offender," Hegarty continued.
Bergman, a 12-year department veteran, was put on the standard paid leave while the shooting is investigated.
FOX 13's Kellie Cowan met Officer Tim Bergman and his K9, Indo back in March. We wish them a fast recovery.