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A man convicted of fatally stabbing a Pittsburgh police dog has been sentenced to 17 years, 9 months to 44 years in prison.
A judge said Tuesday that John Lewis Rush must also serve 8 years of probation following his release.
Channel 11's Jennifer Tomazic reports the judge sentenced John Rush on each charge and the sentence will run consecutively.
The 22-year-old Stowe Township resident was convicted in December of torturing a police animal, aggravated assault on the dog's handler, who was stabbed in a shoulder, and three other officers and other offenses.
Police say Rush stabbed the dog in the back and wounded two officers trying to arrest him in January 2014 on warrants for violating probation and failing to register as a sex offender. Rush says he stabbed the dog in self-defense.
The incident prompted state lawmakers to stiffen the penalty for harming police animals.
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- Gov. Corbett signs Rocco’s Law
- Pittsburgh police welcome new K-9 officer to force
- Late K-9 officer’s memorial T-shirts generate $47K for Pittsburgh K-9 unit
- House passes ‘Rocco’s Law’ that would increase penalty for hurting, killing police dogs
- Witness: ‘Rocco clearly saved my life’; Man accused of killing K-9 officer in court
- Ben Roethlisberger Foundation getting Rocco’s handler new dog
- Memorial service held for Pittsburgh K-9 officer killed in line of duty
- Public memorial for Pittsburgh K-9 officer Rocco
- Man accused in stabbing death of Pittsburgh K-9 officer denied bail
- Sales of shirts for slain Pittsburgh police dog Rocco generate thousands
- Local lawmakers propose tougher penalties for killing police dog
- ‘Remember Rocco Tee’ proceeds to benefit Pittsburgh’s K-9 program
- Pittsburgh K-9 officer Rocco's funeral will now be open to public