Powell, TN – A Knox County sheriff’s deputy was inadvertently shot by her partner on Monday when he tried to shoot a pit bull that was attacking her.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) said the incident occurred at about 11 p.m. on July 4 when deputies responded to a call in the 8200-block of Brickyard Road in Powell, WBIR reported.
The sheriff’s department said that when deputies arrived at the trailer home, a large pit bull came from behind the residence and charged at rookie KCSO Deputy Lydia Driver.
The dog attacked Deputy Driver and her partner, KCSO Deputy Jordan Hurst, drew his weapon and tried to shoot the pit bull, WBIR reported.
But Deputy Hurst’s bullet struck Deputy Driver’s leg instead of the dog.
The wounded deputy was transported to University of Tennessee Medical Center and taken into surgery, WBIR reported.
She was expected to survive her wounds and was recovering in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
KCSO placed Deputy Hurst on paid administrative leave while the incident is investigated, as is protocol for all officer-involved shootings, WBIR reported.
The pit bull that attacked Deputy Driver was taken into custody by animal control.
Officials said that Deputy Driver graduated from the academy in May, but had worked for the sheriff’s department since 2015 in the LEIDs unit and corrections, WBIR reported.
Deputy Hurst is a veteran of the sheriff’s department who fatally shot a man armed with a knife who had already stabbed three women in at a gas station in Strawberry Plains in 2020.
“Law enforcement is a dangerous profession; it is unpredictable,” Knox County Sheriff Tom Spangler told reporters after Deputy Driver was shot.
“Officers deal with people and situations the average person will never experience in their lifetime,” Sheriff Spangler explained. “This incident is unfortunate, but we will get through it together.”
“We are blessed to serve a community who loves and appreciates our men and women; for that, I’m grateful,” the sheriff added.
Blue Line Tennessee launched a GoFundMe to help support Deputy Driver, who is expected to be off duty for an extended period as she makes her recovery.