Richard Stieb.
Richard Stieb.

Richard Stieb allegedly tries to drown Oldo the police dog

Richard Stieb reportedly has a long criminal history, with a felony conviction for burglary among his accomplishments.

But according to a Nexis search, none of his alleged crimes generated a single media blip -- until now, after he was charged with doing something sure to earn the ire of law enforcement and the public in general.

He supposedly tried to drown a police dog named Oldo.

The Richard Stieb arrest affidavit from the Mesa County Sheriff's Office, based on Colorado's Western Slope, documents the search for a burglar well after nightfall on August 11. Officers responding to the scene included canine handler Geraldine Earthman and the Grand Junction Police Department's Tim Janda.

Eventually, Oldo got a bead on Stieb in a sagebrush-covered area, and the man was eventually captured. During a subsequent interview, he claimed to have been "beat up" by law enforcement for "no reason" -- but the affidavit tells a more complicated story. According to the document, a deputy witnessed "Oldo and Stieb go into an irrigation ditch and heard Officer Earthman yelling that the dog was being drowned."

Janda later said he "observed Stieb get bit by Oldo when he was lying on the ground." Afterward, "he saw Stieb grab Oldo with both hands and the two of them roll into the water" -- specifically, an irrigation ditch. Janda subsequently "jumped onto the suspect" and succeeded in subduing him.

During his various bouts, Stieb suffered lacerations on his side and face that required stitches -- and Oldo certainly didn't come out of the confrontation unscathed. A vet's report showed that the dog sustained scratches and bruising to his ears, face and neck, as well as water and small rocks in his stomach.

Fortunately, the dog is expected to make a full recovery. As for Stieb, he was arrested on suspicion of first-degree burglary and a whole lot more, including second-degree assault, a couple of weapons charges, reckless endangerment and -- oh, yeah -- aggravated cruelty to an animal.

In other words, Oldo, who's expected to make a complete recovery, has a fine chance of getting his revenge. Good boy.

Page down to read the Mesa County Sheriff's Office release, with more details about the Stieb-Oldo smackdown:

GJPD K-9 INJURED IN APPREHENSION OF SUSPECT

Mesa County, Colorado -- Last night at approximately 11:00 p.m. Mesa County Sheriff's Office was dispatched to a burglary in progress in the 1700 block of L ½ Road. The homeowner reported the suspect was in his garage/storage shed, the suspect fired a shot in the air upon being discovered and ran off the property. Fruita Police Department was in the area when the call was dispatched and four Fruita Police Department Officers arrived to assist the MCSO. The quick response of Fruita PD helped keep the suspect in the area. Mesa County Deputies requested the additional resources of a Grand Junction Police Department K-9 to track the suspect. A total of five GJPD officers arrived on scene to assist in the apprehension of the suspect.

GJPD Officers and MCSO Deputies began tracking the subject to the northwest of the victim's residence. Approximately ¼ mile into the track, the suspect was located. The suspect would not comply with orders and the GJPD released the K-9. As the K-9 apprehended the suspect, the suspect grabbed the dog and pulled it into a canal full of water holding the K-9 underwater in an attempt to drown the K-9. Deputies and officers went hands-on in an attempt to subdue the suspect and rescue the K-9. Ultimately, the suspect was secured and transported by ambulance to Community Hospital where he was treated for facial injuries and a laceration to his side. After being medically cleared the suspect was transported to the Mesa County Detention Facility.

The GJPD K-9 "Oldo" was transported to a local vet and found to have scratches to an ear, bruising to the ears, face, neck, water in the lungs, small rocks and water in his stomach. Oldo will be off duty through Saturday but is expected to make a full recovery; he is currently at home recovering.

The suspect identified as, Richard Stieb (DOB 10/13/71), is currently being held in the Mesa County Detention Facility on the following charges: 1st degree burglary (3F); 2nd degree assault (4F); felony menacing (5F); possession of a weapon by a previous offender (5F); aggravated cruelty to animals (6F); prohibited use of a firearm (2M); reckless endangerment (3M). In addition to those charges from last night, Stieb had two outstanding warrants for his arrest: a failure to appear and parole absconder. Deputies believe drugs and alcohol are suspected to be a factor in this case.

This was an excellent collaborative effort by the men and women of the GJPD, FPD, and MCSO. There is no doubt that Oldo was instrumental in the apprehension of this suspect. A handgun was found where the suspect had been laying; because of this deputies feel that Oldo was instrumental in keeping a bad situation from becoming much worse.

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