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A bogus report of a suicide led Box Elder County lawmen into the confrontation with angry Rottweilers, ending with the besieged officers having to fight off one of the angry canines and shoot another.
Box Elder County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Kevin Potter said dispatchers received an anonymous call about 10 p.m. Saturday that a woman inside a home near Beaver Dam, about 20 miles north of Brigham City, had killed herself. A sheriff's deputy and a Utah Highway Patrol trooper went to the residence to check on the report, only to find the two dogs loose in the driveway.
"They stopped their approach to the front door and tried to have dispatchers call someone in the home to take care of dogs, but no one answered," Potter said.
The deputy and trooper then were joined by two more deputies, and the four decided to attempt to enter the yard and knock on the door as a group, hoping their greater numbers would deter the snarling animals.
"The two Rottweilers became aggressive and came at the lead deputy. He hit both of them with his baton, they retreated and then circled back at him. He again hit one with his baton [but] had to shoot twice at the other dog [to protect himself]," Potter said.
The dog yelped and ran off into the darkness. "We never did find it, and we're still not sure how badly hurt it was," Potter said Wednesday.
Finally able to approach the home, the officers repeatedly pounded on the front door and shouted, but got no answer. Concerned the suicide report was legitimate, they were able to enter the residence through an unlocked garage door.
Officers found the woman and her boyfriend, appearing to be intoxicated, sound asleep in a bedroom. "We had to shake them awake," Potter said.
Potter, noting that the report of suicide proved unfounded and that no citations were issued, declined to identity the couple.
The identity of the caller who made the original suicide report remained a mystery.
None of the officers involved were injured.