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Watsonville police dog returns home and expected to be okay after being stabbed in pursuit

Watsonville Police

WATSONVILLE, Calif. (KION-TV)- UPDATE ON NOV. 9, 2023 AT 5:10 PM- Watsonville Police said that their police dog Cruze is expected to make a full recovery after he was stabbed during a pursuit on Tuesday afternoon.

Watsonville Police said that Cruze is currently at home resting and recovering after being treated by Pacific and Santa Cruz Veterinary Specialists.

His handler, Officer Jay Garcia shared that Cruze is in good sprits and enjoying the extra dog treats.

Cruze was stabbed after he chased down 28-year-old Juan Marquez on Tuesday night. Marquez turned and stabbed Cruze with a knife.

Marquez was arrested and booked into the Monterey County Jail after stabbing a man at the Pajaro Rescue Mission on Sunday.

Watsonville Police dog stabbing suspect involved in another stabbing Sunday, says deputies

A stabbing suspect is in jail after allegedly stabbing a Watsonville Police dog in a separate stabbing incident on Tuesday afternoon, according to Watsonville Police

Officers were on patrol around 4 p.m. when multiple Flock Safety cameras alerted them of a Honda Accord connected to a stabbing in Monterey County.

Officers performed a traffic stop on the 200 block of Rodriguez Street in Downtown Watsonville. The suspect who police identified as 28-year-old Juan Marquez kept ignoring comments from officers to get out of the car.

Marquez jumped out of the car and ran from the area. Police said that's when K-9 Officer Cruze was released and caught up to the suspect.

Police said Marquez was bit, turned and then stabbed Cruze with a knife.

Multiple officers swarmed Marquez and tazed him afterward, according to Watsonville Police.

Watsonville Police arrested 28-year-old Juan Marquez after he allegedly stabbed a Watsonville police dog. This is a photo of when officers are treating Marquez who had moderate injuries to his arm after being tazed. Photo courtesy of Watsonville Police

Cruze was transported to an emergency pet clinic and is expected to be okay after suffering "superficial" wounds from the incident. Marquez was treated for moderate injuries to his arm at the scene and Watsonville Community Hospital.

Watsonville Police said that Marquez, who allegedly stabbed Cruze, was also connected with a stabbing investigation at the Pajaro Rescue Mission on Railroad Avenue that happened on Sunday night.

The Monterey County Sheriff's Office said they responded around 6:50 p.m. to the Rescue Mission for reports of a male suspect who stabbed another man and took off.

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office got to the scene first and assisted with initial witness statements and started searching for the suspect.

The Monterey County Sheriff's Office said that witnesses and people living at the Pajaro Rescue Mission identified the suspect as 28-year-old Juan Marquez.

According to deputies, the male victim was stabbed in the upper right back area, and the wound was approximately two to three inches in length and two inches deep. The victim was conscious and breathing but in a great deal of pain.

Deputies said that the victim gave a statement to them and said he had been staying at the Rescue Mission for over a month and he did not know the suspect.

The victim told investigators that he was sitting down in the eating area when he felt someone get closer to him. The victim said that he felt a "punch" on the right side of his back but did not feel any pain.

The victim told investigators that Marquez told him that "this is a message," as he stabbed him and walked away.

The victim noticed he was bleeding and immediately realized that he had been stabbed. He told investigators that he did not know why Marquez would stab him and said that Marquez had been at the shelter for over a week.

The male victim was treated at Natividad Medical Center and later released.

The Monterey County Sheriff's Office did place a be on the lookout alert for Marquez.

Marquez was arrested and booked into the Monterey County Jail for attempted murder charges. The Monterey County Sheriff's Office said that Marquez waived his extradition. Watsonville Police said that they will be filing charges against Marquez for injury to a police officer animal and resisting arrest.

He remains in Monterey County Jail on a $1,000,000 bail.

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Victor Guzman

Victor Guzman is the Assistant News Director at KION News Channel 5/46.

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Derrick Ow

Assignment Editor for KION News Channel 5/46


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