Police dog agitator bitten by long arm of the law

Juan A. Peralta, 47, was arrested after on drug charges June 10, 2013, after reportedly agitating a Gresham police K-9 that was sitting in a patrol car and then pulling out a baggie of rock cocaine. Police say he was intoxicated at the time. (Multnomah County Jail)
Juan A. Peralta, 47, was arrested after on drug charges June 10, 2013, after reportedly agitating a Gresham police K-9 that was sitting in a patrol car and then pulling out a baggie of rock cocaine. Police say he was intoxicated at the time. (Multnomah County Jail)

Everyone knows to never tease a dog.

But a Vancouver man learned that lesson the hard way and ended up in jail as a result.

It all started innocently enough. Two K-9 officers were on a dinner break at Rico Taco in the 100 block of Southeast 181st Avenue at about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday, June 10, when a patron approached their table to let them know that an intoxicated man was “messing with” a police dog in a patrol car, said Lt. Claudio Grandjean, Gresham Police spokesman.

The officers went out and sure enough, found a drunken man with his face pressed up against one of the windows. He was banging his fist against the grate, agitating Officer Shawn Debler’s K-9 partner Basco.

Debler yelled for the man to leave the dog alone.

With that, the man – identified as Juan A. Peralta, 47, of Vancouver – turned around, revealing his freshly urinated pants, Grandjean said.

The man was exhibiting the usual signs of intoxication, such as slow motor movements and slurred speech, as well as the more unusual one – a desire to anger a police dog – Grandjean said.

Planning to take the man to the Hooper Detoxification Center, Debler asked for the man’s identification.

As Peralta reached into his pocket for his ID, he pulled out a bunch of dollar bills followed by a baggie of rock cocaine, which he threw on the ground.

So instead of taking Peralta to the detox center as planned, he was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center on an allegation of cocaine possession. He was released on his own recognizance on Thursday, July 11.

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