A man who stabbed two San Diego police dogs in 2021 was sentenced Thursday to nine years in state prison.
Dedrick Jones, 37, pleaded guilty to stabbing the first dog, Titan, in January 2021 and was sentenced to one year in jail, plus probation. Following his release from jail and while on probation for the first stabbing, Jones attacked another police dog, Hondo, 11 months later.
In both instances, Jones was arrested following standoffs with San Diego police that ended with officers releasing the dogs and Jones stabbing the animals.
Both dogs survived the attacks, though Titan has since died, according to Deputy District Attorney Clay Biddle. The prosecutor said Titan’s death “is not directly related” to the stabbing, but has not been ruled out as a contributing factor.
Jones, on trial for Hondo’s stabbing, represented himself. He was convicted of brandishing a knife, but jurors did not reach verdicts on several other counts. He later pleaded guilty to the remaining counts, which included animal cruelty, injury to a peace officer animal and resisting arrest.
Defense attorney Denis Lainez asked San Diego Superior Court Judge Dwayne Moring for a sentence of seven years, citing Jones’ troubled upbringing, which he said causes him to react incorrectly in panic situations.
Lainez also said the police call that led to Hondo’s stabbing was based on a false report that Jones had vandalized a person’s car. The attorney said that while “I wish he had handled this better,” he argued that the person who initially contacted police lied about what occurred and officers responded as though he had committed a crime.
“Mr. Jones had done absolutely nothing wrong and because of who he was or because of his circumstances, he was completely not believed,” Lainez said.
Biddle argued Thursday for a sentence of just over 12 years in prison, telling the judge that Jones has a “long and violent criminal history” that includes punching a police officer in the face in Florida in 2012.
According to San Diego police, Jones was armed with two knives during the standoff in the Midway District prior to Titan’s stabbing. Titan received around 100 stitches and had part of his colon removed as a result.
The second stabbing happened on Riley Street in the same community. Police said Jones was swinging a knife and climbed onto a parked car, then approached officers while still holding the blade.
Hondo was stabbed at least twice in the chest before officers took Jones into custody. The dog was able to return to duty a few weeks later, police said.
– City News Service