Photo: K9 Pax
Originally published as a City of Chico press release –
“On 07/20/21 just after 7pm, a Chico Police Officer attempted to conduct a vehicle stop at W. Shasta Ave and Esplanade. The driver fled at a high rate of speed. Officers began to pursue, but shortly thereafter terminated their pursuit due to the high speed.
Officers lost sight of the vehicle. Officers responded to the area of Bell Rd. and Muir Ave. to find the vehicle had collided into a horse trough. Near the vehicle Officers found the front passenger, a pregnant woman.
As medics were summoned for the woman, responding Officers began to set up a perimeter to locate the driver. Officer Cox and his partner, K9 Pax, responded to the scene. K9 Pax has been working on his tracking skills; he was put to the test. Pax picked up the driver’s scent and tracked him to a residence/orchard in the area.
The driver, later identified as Joshua MASTERSON (31), was found by Pax hiding in some bushes alongside a barbed wire fence. MASTERSON was apprehended by Pax undeterred by the barb wire fence. As a result, MASTERSON suffered a minor dog bite and Pax had some minor injuries as a result of the barbed wire fence.
MASTERSON is on parole but had absconded and had a felony warrant for his arrest. MASTERSON was booked into Butte County Jail.
Our K9 handlers and their partners train regularly in areas to include apprehension, tracking, and drug detection. As this case demonstrates, they are an invaluable asset to our patrol teams and directly contribute to the safety of our community.”