Bexar County, Texas.- Deputies have identified the man who they said killed a Bexar County Sheriff's Office K-9 and opened fire on authorities after leading authorities on a chase late Friday night.
Matthew Reyes Mireles, 38, is being held in lieu of $650,000 bail and is charged with interfering with a police service animal, attempted capital murder of a police officer, aggravated assault against a public servant and evading arrest with a vehicle.
The charges range from third- to first-degree felonies.
3 men in custody after vehicle chase in Leon Valley, police say Karnes County Sheriff Dwayne Villanueva said the chase started off as a routine traffic stop by Karnes City police.
Mireles then led officers on a pursuit throughout Karnes County for about 30 minutes before moving on to Bexar County, Villanueva said.
Loop 1604 chase
Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar said three of his deputies and two Texas Department of Public Safety troopers then pursued Mireles, who was known to have several outstanding warrants, including one for DWI.
Salazar said Mireles fired several shots at the officers who were chasing him.
The chase ended in the area of Loop 1604 and Highway 151 with Mireles getting out of his truck and leaving it in reverse. The truck hit a Bexar County Sheriff's Office patrol car.
Salazar said Mireles then fired one shot before walking down Loop 1604 slowly.
Salazar said as Mireles walked down the highway, he fired several shots wildly at the officers. He also pointed the gun at himself, the helicopter pursuing him and passers-by, Salazar said.
Deputies then deployed K-9 Chucky, a 5-year-old Belgian Malinois, to try to subdue the man.
Chucky was able to bite Mireles before Mireles fired several shots at the dog, killing him, Salazar said.
“Chucky went out doing what he was brought here to do -- to save lives,” Salazar said.
Deputies and troopers then shot at Mireles several times, and he received gunshot wounds to his lower extremities, Salazar said.
Salazar said Mireles was conscious when he was being taken to the ambulance. He was taken to University Hospital in critical condition.
Salazar said he heard several reports about the man going live on Facebook during the pursuit.
The Texas Rangers will be investigating the case further.
Salazar said the deputy who handles the K-9 was coming to terms with how he was going to tell his family that Chucky wasn’t going to come home. He said the Sheriff’s Office will be there for emotional support during this difficult time.
The sheriff said there will be a funeral for Chucky.
A procession of law enforcement vehicles escorted Chucky's body to Becker Animal Hospital early Saturday morning. The sheriff said Chucky will be buried with full honors.
In 2016, Chucky was outfitted with a bullet and stab proof vest through a donation from Vested Interest K9s, Inc. The Sheriff's Office said Saturday that Chucky's handler did not have an opportunity to put Chucky's vest on before he was deployed.
"The on-scene commander made the decision to deploy the dog to address a deadly immediate threat to the public and officers," the Sheriff's Office said in a written satement. "It does not appear the handler had an opportunity to put body armor on Chucky before the deployment.
Preliminarily, it appears all policies and procedures were complied with. The whole incident is under routine review."