The Herald Bulletin

January 8, 2013

Man pleads guilty to robbing bank, shooting police dog

By Jack Molitor
The Herald Bulletin

ANDERSON, Ind. — A man who held up a bank with a gun and shot a police dog in the ensuing chase pleaded guilty Tuesday.

Joseph Turner, 22, of Anderson, racked up five felonies and two Class A misdemeanors during a crime spree on Aug. 18, 2012. The charges included armed robbery, criminal recklessness, pointing a firearm and striking a law enforcement animal.

After more than four months of court deliberation, Turner forwent jury trial and pleaded guilty to all seven counts Tuesday in Madison Circuit Court 6.

Armed robbery, the most serious offense, carries a sentence of up to 20 years.

Turner will be sentenced Feb. 5.

Turner started the morning of the crime by entering the PNC Bank on Nichol Avenue, pointing his handgun at tellers and yelling at them to “give me all your money,” according to the probable cause affidavit.

He escaped with more than $2,300 on a mountain bike, and was tracked by detectives to the 3000 block of West Eighth Street, according to the report.

Anderson Police Department and Madison County Sheriff’s Department deployed K-9 units and SWAT teams to chase Turner, who ignored commands to stop. Turner shot a K-9 dog named Magnum during the scuffle, according to the report. The dog died of his injuries a few days later, the second Anderson police K-9 to be killed in the line of duty within a month.

Turner led police to a bean field where he continued to resist officers but was eventually subdued, according to the affidavit.

Turner applied to have the case heard in Veteran’s Treatment Court in August but the request was denied in September, according to public record.

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