17-year-old accused of shooting Gwinnett K-9 due in court next week

Cpl. Aaron Carlyle escorts out K-9 Kai, who was shot multiple times last month, as Gwinnett County police officers line up and give a round of applause outside North Georgia Veterinary Specialists in Buford on Tuesday, June 14. Kai is a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois that performs dual roles as a patrol and narcotics K-9 officer. The dog has worked with Gwinnett police for less than a year. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

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Cpl. Aaron Carlyle escorts out K-9 Kai, who was shot multiple times last month, as Gwinnett County police officers line up and give a round of applause outside North Georgia Veterinary Specialists in Buford on Tuesday, June 14. Kai is a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois that performs dual roles as a patrol and narcotics K-9 officer. The dog has worked with Gwinnett police for less than a year. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

A 17-year-old accused of shooting a Gwinnett County police dog will appear before a judge Wednesday to face multiple charges, including assault against a law enforcement officer.

Levi Bryan was critically injured when a Gwinnett police officer returned fire May 23, and he has been held in the county jail since his release from a hospital June 2. The wounded dog, K-9 Kai, was released from an animal hospital earlier this week.

ExploreInjured Gwinnett police dog released from animal hospital

The night of the shooting, officers went looking for Bryan after getting reports the teenager threatened his girlfriend and others with a gun inside a home on Pine Lane, in a neighborhood off Ga. 124.

Bryan was ordered to leave the home but had been seen walking behind houses nearby, according to the GBI, which is investigating the incident as an officer-involved shooting.

Explore17-year-old shot by Gwinnett police after he fired on K-9, GBI says

A helicopter and K-9 units were called to help in the search, and Bryan was found in a wooded area not far from the Pine Lane home. He allegedly fired on officers, striking K-9 Kai twice, and they returned fire, GBI officials said in a news release.

Officers performed first aid on Bryan before he was taken to a hospital.

Kai is a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois that performs dual roles as a patrol and narcotics K-9 officer and had worked with Gwinnett police for less than a year. He was shot in the chest and hindquarters, his partner said Tuesday after the dog’s release from North Georgia Veterinary Specialists in Buford.

“He took rounds that were meant for us,” Cpl. Aaron Carlyle told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution through tears. “And he never faltered from his job. And we went home that night to our families.”

Kai will rest at home with Carlyle while he recovers, and he was expected to undergo physical therapy. His handler was hopeful the dog would be able to return to duty.

Bryan is scheduled to appear before a Magistrate Court judge Wednesday for a preliminary hearing at 8:30 a.m. He is being held without bond on two counts each of aggravated assault against an officer, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

He also faces single charges of harming a law enforcement animal, unlawful entry, first-degree burglary and possession of a gun by a person under the age of 18.