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Man arrested after allegedly choking police dog

Wed., Aug. 13, 2014, 11:30 a.m.

Richard Urbanski, 29, booked into jail on felony charge

A 29-year-old man with multiple felony convictions was arrested Tuesday evening after allegedly attempting to choke a police dog.

Richard Urbanski was booked into Spokane County Jail after 6 p.m. on a felony charge of harming a police dog. Officers initially arrived at a home in the 600 block of East 9th Avenue to take Urbanski into custody on a Department of Corrections escape warrant around 4 p.m., according to a news release from police.

Urbanski, who police say was involved in an altercation with a deputy sheriff’s dog just a few weeks ago, refused to exit the residence when officers announced their presence. Officers had information Urbanski may have been armed with a knife, and police dog Rav was sent in to the house to aid in his capture.

Rav found Urbanski hiding under a staircase, and the 29-year-old grabbed him by the collar and attempted to choke the dog, according to officers. Urbanski was ordered to release Rav, and police say he ignored those commands. He was eventually apprehended after an officer shot him with a Taser, according to a news release.

Rav was not seriously injured in the altercation, according to police.

Harming a police dog is a felony offense that carries a potential penalty of five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. In addition, if found guilty Urbanski could be forced under Washington state law to pay a civil penalty of up to $5,000 to the police department.

Urbanski is a 10-time convicted felon, including charges of burglary and resisting arrest, according to Spokane police. He was arrested in 2006 on suspicions of burglary after an elderly woman recognized him as one of her grandson’s acquaintances. He later pleaded guilty in the case and was sentenced to a little less than five years in prison.

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