Couple On Crime Spree Strike K9 With Car, K9 Gets Revenge

Swett & Ellig

When couples go on a crime spree, it’s definitely double trouble. Couple’s partnering in crime invoke the image of Bonnie and Clyde and while few live up to the duo, it’s not for lack of trying.

Most couple-led-crime sprees are little more than a chaotic mayhem ending with themselves or others getting hurt.

Florida Couple

In Haines City, Florida, a police officer observed a blue 2003 Toyota sitting at a construction site while out patrolling. According to WTSP, it was around 2:00 a.m. and this was a high crime area.

Figuring he had stumbled on something no good, officer William Tucker decided to take a look.

The suspect, Matthew Swett, spotted the officer as he approached. Swett quickly got into his truck along with another individual, Kaila Ellig, and they charged the patrol car. The collision damaged the front of the officer’s car and brought both vehicles to a stop.

K-9 officer Joseph Elam and his dog Cash watched Swett take off and gave pursuit. Officer Elam followed the couple for a short time before it crashed into a ditch. The suspects ignored verbal commands to surrender as they tried to get the car running again.

That’s when Cash was unleashed and went after them, ready to take them down. Unfortunately, Swett was able to get the car running and again charged towards police.

“The commands were ignored, and Swett put the vehicle in reverse and intentionally drove toward the two, striking Cash. Officer Elam, seeing what was about to happen, used the leash to pull Cash away from the accelerating vehicle into his arms and ran, with Cash in his arms, to avoid being run over. Thanks to his quick action, K-9 Cash was not injured.”

Haines City Spokesperson

Escape Tactics

According to officers, Swett repeatedly backed up and rammed Officer Elam’s vehicle with his own before eventually taking off again.

Fortunately, this next jaunt did not last very long before he crashed again. Swett and Ellig jumped out of the vehicle and ran into the woods.

The abandoned vehicle caught fire while Polk County and Osceola County Sheriff’s Deputies set up a perimeter and began tracking the two suspects.

The pair ended up climbing over a fence and cutting a hole through a screen to gain entry to the home of Haines City Mayor Morris West.

Under Arrest

Officers arrived at Mayor West’s home and confronted the pair again, but Swett refused to follow officers’ commands and began reaching into his waistband. Acting quickly, Officer Elam released Cash and the dog went to work.

In the melee that followed, Swett was bitten on the leg and finally decided it was time to give in. According to authorities, Ellig came peacefully after seeing what Cash did to her boyfriend.

Swett is facing a laundry list of charges, including battery on a law enforcement officer and armed burglary. He was treated at the hospital for his wound before going to jail.

Who’s a good boy? Cash is a good boy… just like all the other hardworking Police K9 officers we love to see at work.




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